14-17 May 2018
New Orleans
US/Central timezone

X-ray microtomography imaging of abiotic carbonate precipitation in sands and its effect on permeability of sands

15 May 2018, 10:08
15m
New Orleans

New Orleans

Oral 20 Minutes MS 2.17: Digital imaging of multi-scale porous materials, and image-based simulation and upscaling of flow properties Parallel 3-D

Speaker

Mr Seung-Hun Baek (KAIST)

Description

Calcium carbonate (CaCO3) precipitation is a frequently-occurring natural subsurface process, in which supersaturated CaCO3 in brine can precipitate in subsurface environments. This phenomenon can naturally occur as part of diagenesis of rocks and can also be utilized for soil improvement. This study explored abiotic carbonate precipitation in coarse sands using X-ray microtomography (X-ray μCT) and examined its effect on permeability. CaCO3 was abiotically precipitated in a sand column, where brine supersaturated with CaCO3 was flowed into the column while controlling pH. During precipitation, the variations in porosity and pore saturation of precipitated carbonate were monitored by measuring the bulk mass of the test column. At the same time, the variation in permeability of the sand column was also measured using the falling-head permeability test. The pore-scale morphological pattern of carbonate precipitation was also examined by using X-ray μCT, imaging the interior structure of the cemented sand. Reductions in porosity and permeability and an increase in CaCO3 saturation were confirmed from the bulk mass measurement. The acquired X-ray images also showed that the precipitated CaCO3 usually coated sand grains. The porosity and CaCO3 saturation values were computed from the obtained X-ray images, and these values were validated against the bulk mass measurement. Further, the measured permeability was compared with the predicted values by Kozeny-Carman model and Kozeny-grain coating model. It indicated that the local porosity reduction, internal porosity within carbonate minerals, and the specific surface area had pronounced effects on the permeability reduction. Meanwhile, existence of of sub-voxel size carbonate crystals is found to act as limitation in the voxel-scale flow simulation.

References

Akili, W. and Torrance, J. K. (1981), “The development and geotechnical problems of sabkha, with preliminary experiments on the static penetration resistance of cemented sands”, Q. J. Engng. Geol., Vol. 14(1), 59-73.
Dadda, A., Geindreau, C., Emeriault, F., du Roscoat, S. R., Garandet, A., Sapin, L. and Filet, A. E. (2017), “Characterization of microstructural and physical properties changes in biocemented sand using 3D X-ray microtomography”, Acta Geotech., Vol. 12(5), 955-970.
DeJong, J. T., Fritzges, M. B. and Nüsslein, K. (2006), “Microbially induced cementation to control sand response to undrained shear”, J. Geotech. Geoenviron., Vol. 132(11), 1381-1392.
Hammes, F. and Verstraete, W. (2002), “Key roles of pH and calcium metabolism in microbial carbonate precipitation”, Rev. Envrion. Sci. Bio., Vol. 1(1), 3-7.
Ismail, M. A., Joer, H. A., Randolph, M. F. and Kucharski, E. (1999), “CIPS, a novel cementing technique for soils”, Univ. of Western Australia Geomechanics Group, Geotech. Rep. G1406.
Molenaar, N. and Venmans, A. A. M. (1993), “Calcium carbonate cementation of sand: A method for producing artificially cemented samples for geotechnical testing and a comparison with natural cementation processes”, Eng. Geol., Vol. 35(1-2), 103-122.
Saxena, S. K. and Lastrico, R. M. (1978), “Static properties of lightly cemented sands”, J. Geotech. Geoenviron., Vol. 104(12), 1449–1464.
Schneider, C. A., Rasband, W. S. and Eliceiri, K. W. (2012), "NIH Image to ImageJ: 25 years of image analysis", Nat. Methods, Vol. 9(7), 671-675.
Whiffin, V. S. (2004), “Microbial CaCO3 precipitation for the production of biocement”, PhD Thesis. Murdoch University.

Acceptance of Terms and Conditions Click here to agree

Primary author

Mr Seung-Hun Baek (KAIST)

Co-author

Prof. Tae-Hyuk Kwon (KAIST)

Presentation Materials

There are no materials yet.