Direct imaging of fluid flow in fault-related rocks by X-ray CT
T. Hirono, M. Takahashi, S. Nakashima, 2003. "Direct imaging of fluid flow in fault-related rocks by X-ray CT", Applications of X-ray Computed Tomography in the Geosciences, F. Mees, R. Swennen, M. Van Geet, P. Jacobs
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Faults profoundly affect patterns and rates of fluid flow and solute transport in the geological environment. They may act as conduits, barriers or combined conduit-barrier systems. In order to elucidate the relationship between fluid flow properties and deformation mechanisms of fault-related rocks, we applied X-ray CT during laboratory permeameter measurements for direct imaging of fluid flow during permeability testing. A KI solution, which has high X-ray attenuation values, was used as a contrast medium for the advection imaging. Three-dimensional fluid flow distributions were measured for the studied fault-related rocks. Fault zones characterized by independent particulate flow as deformation mechanism act as conduits for fluid flow, whereas cataclastic fault zones act as barriers.