UnsatPorMix

MSCA project at Université de Rennes 1

The aim of UnsatPorMix is to elucidate the impact of structural pore-scale heterogeneity on solute spreading, mixing, and reaction rates during unsaturated flow, through the combination of micromodel experiments and numerical model simulations.

Experimental setup

Our experimental setup is based on a transparent flow cell containing a porous medium sample. We use a fluorescent conservative tracer as the solute and track its spreading and mixing during the flow experiment, by taking monochrome images.
We fabricate porous medium samples from PDMS, and we design them as an array of round pillars with varying diameters, providing a heterogeneous flow field.
We inject air and liquid simultaneously to create a connected liquid distribution pattern in the flow cell, to allow the spreading and mixing of the tracer.

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Flow cell

Our flow cell is composed of three transparent PMMA layers and an aluminum base. The middle PMMA layer can hold different porous medium samples, allowing us to test different heterogeneities. Multiple tubes connected to the top plate allow air injection into the flow cell. A uniquely designed inlet chamber is used to create a sharp solute front at the upstream boundary.

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Poster presented at the Cargèse summer school

Our preliminary results were first presented at the 2021 Cargèse summer school on Flow and Transport in Porous and Fractured media.

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Collaborators

Dr. Yves Méheust and Dr. Tanguy Le Borgne, Géoscience Rennes, Université de Rennes 1

 
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Funding

This work is funded by the Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions project no. 843594