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Limit of anisotropic hydraulic conductivity ratio of homogeneous granular materials

Peijun Guo, Yaqian Liu and Dieter Stolle
Limit of anisotropic hydraulic conductivity ratio of homogeneous granular materials
Vadose Zone Journal (November 2015) 14 (11)

Abstract

This paper presents a theoretical upper limit for the anisotropic hydraulic conductivity ratio of homogeneous granular materials with internal structure. On the basis of a volume averaging approach, a theoretical analysis is proposed to relate the permeability of granular material to the spatial distribution of pore spaces. For flow in granular materials, both the linear porosity in the flow direction and the areal porosity in the plane perpendicular to the flow direction are required to describe the directional variation of pore space. The permeability tensor is derived by considering the macroscopic momentum balance equation of the fluid in a porous medium. While the permeability is affected by the porosity and the pore space distribution, the permeability anisotropy ratio is dominated by the directional variation of the linear porosity. By accounting for the theoretical maximum and minimum porosity, it is shown that the upper limit of permeability anisotropy for homogeneous granular materials is approximately 2.5, even for very flat (or elongated) particles and pronounced preferential orientations.


ISSN: 1539-1663
Serial Title: Vadose Zone Journal
Serial Volume: 14
Serial Issue: 11
Title: Limit of anisotropic hydraulic conductivity ratio of homogeneous granular materials
Affiliation: McMaster University, Department of Civil Engineering, Hamilton, ON, Canada
Published: 201511
Text Language: English
Publisher: Soil Science Society of America, Madison, WI, United States
Number of pages: 12
References: 47
Accession Number: 2016-002061
Categories: Engineering geologyHydrogeology
Document Type: Serial
Bibliographic Level: Analytic
Annotation: Includes an appendix
Illustration Description: illus. incl. 1 table
Country of Publication: United States
Secondary Affiliation: GeoRef, Copyright 2017, American Geosciences Institute.
Update Code: 201601
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