1 Department of Environmental Engineering, Technical University of Denmark2 unknown
Studies of NAPL dissolution in porous media have demonstrated that measurement of saturation alone is insufficient to describe the rate of dissolution. Quantification of the NAPL-water interfacial area provides a measure of the expected area available for mass transfer and will likely be a primary determinant of NAPL removal efficiency. To measure the interfacial area, we have used a synchrotron-based CMT technique to obtain high-resolution 3D images of flow in a Soltrol-water glass bead system. The interfacial area is found to increase as the wetting phase saturation decreases, reach a maximum, and then decrease as the wetting phase saturation goes to zero. These results are compared to previous findings for an air-water-glass bead study; The Soltrol-water interfacial areas were found to peak at similar saturations as those measured for the air-water system (20-35% saturation range), however, the peak values were in some cases almost twice Lis high for the oil-water system. We believe that the observed differences between the air-water and oil-water systems to a large degree can be explained by the differences in interfacial tensions for the two systems.
Advances in Water Resources, 2006, Vol 29, Issue 2, p. 227-238