Effect of Fracture Permeability on connectivity of fracture networks.

Molebatsi, T., Galindo Torres, S., Li, L., Bringemeier, D. and Wang, X. (2009). Effect of Fracture Permeability on connectivity of fracture networks.. In: Proceedings, International Mine Water Conference 2009. International Mine Water Conference 2009, Pretoria, South Africa, (248-255). 19 - 23 October.

Author Molebatsi, T.
Galindo Torres, S.
Li, L.
Bringemeier, D.
Wang, X.
Title of paper Effect of Fracture Permeability on connectivity of fracture networks.
Conference name International Mine Water Conference 2009
Conference location Pretoria, South Africa
Conference dates 19 - 23 October
Convener Pulles, William
Proceedings title Proceedings, International Mine Water Conference 2009
Place of Publication Pretoria, South Africa
Publisher International Mine Water Association (IMWA)
Publication Year 2009
Year available 2009
Sub-type Fully published paper
ISBN 9780980262353
Start page 248
End page 255
Total pages 8
Collection year 2010
Language eng
Abstract/Summary Many open pit mines are located in fractured rock systems where water flow paths are complex and difficult to predict. These flow paths are typically controlled by a small subset of fractures that are permeable and interconnected. Most models of flow in fractured rock systems are based on a network of interconnected fractures that are all assumed to be permeable. However this assumption is rarely observed in natural rocks where a significant fraction of the fractures within a connected cluster could be impermeable. Thus in studying fracture flow systems, we need to consider the permeability status (i.e. permeable or impermeable) of individual fractures in addition to the fracture network’s connectivity. Primary percolation clusters based on connectivity alone can be generated according to the fracture density, and probability density functions of fracture length and fracture orientation. These primary clusters, potentially including impermeable clusters, may not all conduct water. Hence percolation clusters need to be refined so that they comprise only open fractures. The density of these refined clusters can then be linked to the hydraulic conductivity, providing a more realistic representation of the natural system. Here we use numerical simulations to examine the effect (on connectivity and permeability) of removing a portion of fractures that are assumed to be impermeable. A discrete fracture network model is applied to formulate an analytical relation between two potentially measurable quantities of fractured rock systems, i.e., scan-line density of all fractures within core samples or boreholes and scan-line density of conductive fractures intercepted by boreholes.
Subjects E1
849805 Management of Water Consumption by Mineral Resource Activities
090702 Environmental Engineering Modelling
Q-Index Code E1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

 
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Created: Wed, 07 Apr 2010, 14:01:30 EST by Jeannette Watson on behalf of School of Civil Engineering