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The Effect of Velocity Correlation on the Spatial Evolution of Breakthrough Curves in Heterogeneous Media

Abstract : In heterogeneous media, the velocity distribution and the spatial correlation structure of velocity for solute particles determine the breakthrough curves and how they evolve as one moves away from the solute source. The ability to predict such evolution can help relating the spatio-statistical hydraulic properties of the media to the transport behavior and travel time distributions. While commonly used non-local transport models such as anomalous dispersion and classical continuous time random walk (CTRW) can reproduce breakthrough curve successfully by adjusting the model parameter values, they lack the ability to relate model parameters to the spatio-statistical properties of the media. This in turns limits the transferability of these models. In the research to be presented, we express concentration or flux of solutes as a distribution over their velocity. We then derive an integrodifferential equation that governs the evolution of the particle distribution over velocity at given times and locations for a particle ensemble, based on a presumed velocity correlation structure and an ergodic cross-sectional velocity distribution. This way, the spatial evolution of breakthrough curves away from the source is predicted based on cross-sectional velocity distribution and the connectivity, which is expressed by the velocity transition probability density. The transition probability is specified via a copula function that can help construct a joint distribution with a given correlation and given marginal velocities. Using this approach, we analyze the breakthrough curves depending on the velocity distribution and correlation properties. The model shows how the solute transport behavior evolves from ballistic transport at small spatial scales to Fickian dispersion at large length scales relative to the velocity correlation length.
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Contributor : Isabelle Dubigeon <>
Submitted on : Wednesday, March 14, 2018 - 2:48:59 PM
Last modification on : Wednesday, August 7, 2019 - 11:44:06 AM


  • HAL Id : insu-01732200, version 1


Arash Massoudieh, Marco Dentz, Tanguy Le Borgne. The Effect of Velocity Correlation on the Spatial Evolution of Breakthrough Curves in Heterogeneous Media . American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting 2017, Dec 2017, New Orleans, United States. pp.H33K-04. ⟨insu-01732200⟩



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