Porosity and Permeability in Sediment Mixtures

Authors


Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences, Wright State University, Dayton, OH 45435; (937) 775-3455; robert.ritzi@wright.edu

Abstract

Porosity in sediments that contain a mix of coarser- and finer-grained components varies as a function of the porosity and volume fraction of each component. We considered sediment mixtures representing poorly sorted sands and gravely sands. We expanded an existing fractional-packing model for porosity to represent mixtures in which finer grains approach the size of the pores that would exist among the coarser grains alone. The model well represents the porosity measured in laboratory experiments in which grain sizes and volume fractions were systematically changed within sediment mixtures. Permeability values were determined for these sediment mixtures using a model based on grain-size statistics and the expanded fractional-packing porosity model. The permeability model well represents permeability measured in laboratory experiments using air- and water-based permeametry on the model sediment mixtures.

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