Post-breakthrough Behavior in Flow through Porous Media

López, Eduardo, Buldyrev, Sergey, Dokholyan, Nikolas, Goldmakher, Leo, Havlin, Shlomo, King, Peter and Stanley, Eugene (2003) Post-breakthrough Behavior in Flow through Porous Media. Physical Review E (Statistical, Nonlinear, and Soft Matter Physics), 67 (5).


We numerically simulate the traveling time of a tracer in convective flow between two points (injection and extraction) separated by a distance r in a model of porous media, d=2 percolation. We calculate and analyze the traveling time probability density function for two values of the fraction of connecting bonds p: the homogeneous case p=1 and the inhomogeneous critical threshold case p=p(c). We analyze both constant current and constant pressure conditions at p=p(c). The homogeneous p=1 case serves as a comparison base for the more complicated p=p(c) situation. We find several regions in the probability density of the traveling times for the homogeneous case (p=1) and also for the critical case (p=p(c)) for both constant pressure and constant current conditions. For constant pressure, the first region I(P) corresponds to the short times before the flow breakthrough occurs, when the probability distribution is strictly zero. The second region II(P) corresponds to numerous fast flow lines reaching the extraction point, with the probability distribution reaching its maximum. The third region III(P) corresponds to intermediate times and is characterized by a power-law decay. The fourth region IV(P) corresponds to very long traveling times, and is characterized by a different power-law decaying tail. The power-law characterizing region IV(P) is related to the multifractal properties of flow in percolation, and an expression for its dependence on the system size L is presented. The constant current behavior is different from the constant pressure behavior, and can be related analytically to the constant pressure case. We present theoretical arguments for the values of the exponents characterizing each region and crossover times. Our results are summarized in two scaling assumptions for the traveling time probability density; one for constant pressure and one for constant current. We also present the production curve associated with the probability of traveling times, which is of interest to oil recovery.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: Flows; traveling times
Subject(s): Complexity
Centre: CABDyN Complexity Centre
Date Deposited: 27 Feb 2012 20:37
Last Modified: 23 Oct 2015 14:06

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