Porosity and fluid flow characterization of granite by capillary wetting using X-ray computed tomography
Y. Géraud, F. Surma, F. Mazerolle, 2003. "Porosity and fluid flow characterization of granite by capillary wetting using X-ray computed tomography", Applications of X-ray Computed Tomography in the Geosciences, F. Mees, R. Swennen, M. Van Geet, P. Jacobs
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The porosity and transfer properties of a very low porosity material (granite) are measured. A new procedure is defined using a capillary test and X-ray computed tomography (CT) scanning. Injected volumes are very low, i.e. a few cm3 for a sample volume of 1 dm3, using a fluid/rock ratio lower than 0.1%. This technique allows monitoring of the anisotropy of fluid flow during the test. Flow along the injection direction is higher than along the perpendicular direction. Saturation depends on the specific saturation of each mineral zone. Multiscale analysis allows defining the flow conditions as being controlled at both the mineral and the sample scale. Results indicate the specific role for various constituting parts of the material. High speed flow occurs in the crack network of K-feldspar, while the storage function is localized in the reaction zone forms by quartz and muscovite.
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X-ray computed tomography (CT) is a technique that allows non-destructive imaging and quantification of internal features of objects. It was originally developed as a medical imaging technique, but it is now also becoming widely used for the study of materials in engineering and the geosciences. X-ray CT reveals differences in density and atomic composition and can therefore be used for the study of porosity, the relative distribution of contrasting solid phases and the penetration of injected solutions. As a non-destructive technique, it is ideally suited for monitoring of processes, such as the movement of solutions and the behaviour of materials under compression. Because large numbers of parallel two-dimensional cross-sections can be obtained, three-dimensional representations of selected features can be created. In this book, various applications of X-ray CT in the geosciences are illustrated by papers covering a wide range of disciplines, including petrology, soil science, petroleum geology, geomechanics and sedimentology.