In situ changes in the moisture content of heated, welded tuff based on thermal neutron measurements
Description: Thermal neutron logs were collected to monitor changes in moisture content within a welded tuff rock mass heated from a borehole containing an electrical heater which remained energized for 195 days. Thermal neutron measurements were made in sampling boreholes before, during and after heating. The results generally corroborated our conceptual understanding of hydrothermal flow as well as most of the numerical modeling conducting for this study. Conceptual models have been developed in conjunction with the numerical model calculations to explain differences in the drying and re-wetting behavior above and below the heater. Numerical modeling indicated that the re-wetting of the dried-out zone was dominated by the binary diffusion of water vapor through fractures. Saturation gradients in the rock matrix resulted in relative humidity gradients which drove water vapor (primarily along fractures) back to the dried-out zone where it condensed along the fracture walls and was imbibed by the matrix. 4 refs., 28 figs.
Date: July 1, 1991
Creator: Ramirez, A.L.; Carlson, R.C. & Buscheck, T.A.
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