Pore-scale modeling of multiphase flow and transport in water-wet porous media

E. Dalla, M. Hilpert, C. Miller, D. Pitea

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review


Pore-scale modeling is appealing for investigating and obtaining macro-scale constitutive equations for multiphase porous medium systems. These approaches are based on rigorous physics and bridge the macroscopic and microscopic scales. In this study, we develop a method to simulate and study the dissolution of non-aqueous phase liquid (NAPL) blobs. Accurately quantifying NAPL mass transfer is crucial for modeling decontamination studies faithfully. Nevertheless, the empirical correlations proposed to date do not transfer from the experimental porous medium for which they were derived to other media. We developed a method, in which we simulate a random packing of spheres and a residual NAPL distribution by matching macroscopic morphological descriptors of an experimental NAPL distribution; then we simulate single-phase flow by using a lattice-Boltzmann approach. Finally we solve the advection-diffusion equation in the pore space by using a high-resolution numerical scheme to simulate mass transfer and transport of the dissolved components. Based upon different simulation results, we evaluate the sensitivity of the mass transfer coefficient with respect to two non-dimensional parameters and compare the simulation results to existing empirical relationships.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)431-441
Number of pages11
JournalAdvances in Ecological Sciences
StatePublished - Dec 1 2003
EventFourth International Conference on Ecosystems and Sustainable Development ECOSUD IV - Siena, Italy
Duration: Jun 4 2003Jun 6 2003

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Environmental Science(all)


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