Matching Items (7)

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Hydraulic Properties of Porous Media Saturated with Nanoparticle-Stabilized Air-Water Foam

Description

The foam generated by the mixture of air and water has a much higher viscosity and lower mobility than those of pure water or gas that constitutes the air-water foam.

The foam generated by the mixture of air and water has a much higher viscosity and lower mobility than those of pure water or gas that constitutes the air-water foam. The possibility of using the air-water foam as a flow barrier for the purpose of groundwater and soil remediation is explored in this paper. A nanoparticle-stabilized air-water foam was fabricated by vigorously stirring the nano-fluid in pressurized condition. The foam bubble size distribution was analyzed with a microscope. The viscosities of foams generated with the solutions with several nanoparticle concentrations were measured as a function of time. The breakthrough pressure of foam-saturated microfluidic chips and sand columns were obtained. The hydraulic conductivity of a foam-filled sand column was measured after foam breakthrough. The results show that: (1) bubble coalescence and the Ostwald ripening are believed to be the reason of bubble size distribution change; (2) the viscosity of nanoparticle-stabilized foam and the breakthrough pressures decreased with time once the foam was generated; (3) the hydraulic conductivity of the foam-filled sand column was almost two orders of magnitude lower than that of a water-saturated sand column even after the foam-breakthrough. Based on the results in this study, the nanoparticle-stabilized air-water foam could be injected into contaminated soils to generate vertical barriers for temporary hydraulic conductivity reduction.

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Date Created
  • 2016-12-14

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Experimental evaluation of the performance of geomembrane liners subject to downdrag and seismic loading

Description

A series of experiments were conducted to support validation of a numerical model for the performance of geomembrane liners subject to waste settlement and seismic loading. These experiments included large

A series of experiments were conducted to support validation of a numerical model for the performance of geomembrane liners subject to waste settlement and seismic loading. These experiments included large scale centrifuge model testing of a geomembrane-lined landfill, small scale laboratory testing to get the relevant properties of the materials used in the large scale centrifuge model, and tensile tests on seamed geomembrane coupons. The landfill model in the large scale centrifuge test was built with a cemented sand base, a thin film NafionTM geomembrane liner, and a mixture of sand and peat for model waste. The centrifuge model was spun up to 60 g, allowed to settle, and then subjected to seismic loading at three different peak ground accelerations (PGA). Strain on the liner and settlement of the waste during model spin-up and subsequent seismic loading and accelerations throughout the model due to seismic loading were acquired from sensors within the model. Laboratory testing conducted to evaluate the properties of the materials used in the model included triaxial compression tests on the cemented sand base, wide-width tensile testing of the thin film geomembrane, interface shear testing between the thin film geomembrane and the waste material, and one dimensional compression and cyclic direct simple shear testing of the sand-peat mixture used to simulate the waste. The tensile tests on seamed high-density polyethylene (HDPE) coupons were conducted to evaluate strain concentration associated with seams oriented perpendicular to an applied tensile load. Digital image correlation (DIC) was employed to evaluate the strain field, and hence seam strain concentrations, in these tensile tests. One-dimensional compression tests were also conducted on composite sand and HDPE samples to evaluate the compressive modulus of HDPE. The large scale centrifuge model and small scale laboratory tests provide the necessary data for numerical model validation. The tensile tests on seamed HDPE specimens show that maximum tensile strain due to strain concentrations at a seam is greater than previously suggested, a finding with profound implications for landfill liner design and construction quality control/quality assurance (QC/QA) practices. The results of the one-dimensional compression tests on composite sand-HDPE specimens were inconclusive.

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Date Created
  • 2016

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Applications of nanotechnology in geotechnical engineering

Description

Nanotechnology has been applied to many areas such as medicine, manufacturing, catalysis, food, cosmetics, and energy since the beginning 21st century. However, the application of nanotechnology to geotechnical engineering has

Nanotechnology has been applied to many areas such as medicine, manufacturing, catalysis, food, cosmetics, and energy since the beginning 21st century. However, the application of nanotechnology to geotechnical engineering has not received much attention. This research explored the technical benefits and the feasibility of applying nanoparticles in geotechnical engineering. Specific studies were conducted by utilizing high-pressure devices, axisymmetric drop shape analysis (ADSA), microfluidics, time-lapse technology, Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM) to develop experiments. The effects of nanoparticle on modifying interfacial tension, wettability, viscosity, sweep efficiency and surface attraction forces were investigated. The results show that nanoparticles mixed in water can significantly reduce the interfacial tension of water in CO2 in the applications of nanofluid-CO2 flow in sediments; nanoparticle stabilized foam can be applied to isolate contaminants from clean soils in groundwater/soil remediation, as well as in CO2 geological sequestration or enhanced oil/gas recovery to dramatically improve the sweep efficiency; nanoparticle coatings are capable to increase the surface adhesion force so as to capture migrating fine particles to help prevent clogging near wellbore or in granular filter in the applications of oil and gas recovery, geological CO2 sequestration, geothermal recovery, contaminant transport, groundwater flow, and stormwater management system.

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Date Created
  • 2016

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Pore-scale Study of Bio-mineral and Bio-gas Formations in Porous Media

Description

The potential of using bio-geo-chemical processes for applications in geotechnical engineering has been widely explored in order to overcome the limitation of traditional ground improvement techniques. Biomineralization via urea hydrolysis,

The potential of using bio-geo-chemical processes for applications in geotechnical engineering has been widely explored in order to overcome the limitation of traditional ground improvement techniques. Biomineralization via urea hydrolysis, referred to as Microbial or Enzymatic Induced Carbonate Precipitation (MICP/EICP), has been shown to increase soil strength by stimulating precipitation of calcium carbonate minerals, bonding soil particles and filling the pores. Microbial Induced Desaturation and Precipitation (MIDP) via denitrification has also been studied for its potential to stabilize soils through mineral precipitation, but also through production of biogas, which can mitigate earthquake induced liquefaction by desaturation of the soil. Empirical relationships have been established, which relate the amount of products of these biochemical processes to the engineering properties of treated soils. However, these engineering properties may vary significantly depending on the biomineral and biogas formation mechanism and distribution patterns at pore-scale. This research focused on the pore-scale characterization of biomineral and biogas formations in porous media.

The pore-scale characteristics of calcium carbonate precipitation via EICP and biogenic gas formation via MIDP were explored by visual observation in a transparent porous media using a microfluidic chip. For this purpose, an imaging system was designed and image processing algorithms were developed to analyze the experimental images and detect the nucleation and growth of precipitated minerals and formation and migration mechanisms of gas bubbles within the microfluidic chip. Statistical analysis was performed based on the processed images to assess the evolution of biomineral size distribution, the number of precipitated minerals and the porosity reduction in time. The resulting images from the biomineralization study were used in a numerical simulation to investigate the relation between the mineral distribution, porosity-permeability relationships and process efficiency. By comparing biogenic gas production with abiotic gas production experiments, it was found that the gas formation significantly affects the gas distribution and resulting degree of saturation. The experimental results and image analysis provide insight in the kinetics of the precipitation and gas formation processes and their resulting distribution and related engineering properties.

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Date Created
  • 2019

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Validation of a numerical model for design of geomembranes subject to extreme loads

Description

A numerical model for design of the geomembrane elements of waste containment systems has been validated by laboratory testing. Due to the absence of any instrumented case histories of seismic

A numerical model for design of the geomembrane elements of waste containment systems has been validated by laboratory testing. Due to the absence of any instrumented case histories of seismic performance of geomembrane liner systems, a large scale centrifuge test of a model geomembrane-lined landfill subject to seismic loading was conducted at the University of California at Davis Centrifuge Test facility as part of National Science Foundation Network for Earthquake the Engineering Simulation Research (NEESR) program. Data collected in the large scale centrifuge test included waste settlement, liner strains and earthquake accelerations at various locations throughout the model. This data on landfill and liner seismic performance has been supplemented with additional laboratory and small scale centrifuge tests to determine the parameters required for the numerical model, including strength and stiffness of the model materials, interface shear strengths, and interface stiffness. The numerical model explicitly assesses the forces and strains in the geomembrane elements of a containment system to subject to both static and seismic loads the computer code FLACTM, a finite difference program for non-linear analysis of continua. The model employs a beam element with zero moment of inertia and with interface elements on both sides to model to represent the geomembrane elements in the liner system. The model also includes non-linear constitutive models for the stress-strain behavior of geomembrane beam elements and an elastic-perfectly plastic model for the load-displacement behavior of the beam interfaces. Parametric studies are conducted with the validated numerical model to develop recommendations for landfill design, construction, and construction quality assurance.

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Date Created
  • 2017

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Experimental study of cement stabilized fiber reinforced compressed earth blocks as an alternative building material

Description

Concern and interest about the environment and ecologic systems have promoted the usage of earth as a construction material. Technology advancement has resulted in the evolution of adobe into compressed

Concern and interest about the environment and ecologic systems have promoted the usage of earth as a construction material. Technology advancement has resulted in the evolution of adobe into compressed stabilized earth blocks (CSEB). CSEB’s are prepared by compressing the soil-stabilizer mixture at a particular stress. In order to accomplish the required strength, cement has been used in a regular basis as stabilizing agent. It is of interest to find means to reduce the cement used in their construction without affecting its dry strength and durability. In this study, natural fibers were used along with lower proportions of cement to stabilize soil with varying fine content. Blocks were compacted at 10MPa stress and prepared by using 7%, 5% and 3% cement along with fiber content ranging from 0.25% to 2%. The effect of fine content, cement and fibers on strength and durability of the CSEB blocks were studied. Different sand/fine fractions of a native Arizona soil were used to fabricate the blocks. Results indicate that the compressive strength reaches a maximum value for blocks with 30% fine content and inclusion of fibers up to 0.5% increased the dry compressive strength. The use of 0.25% fiber by weight and 5% cement content showed comparable dry compressive strength to that of the 7% cement blocks with no fibers. The dry strength of the blocks reached an optimal condition when the combination of materials was 30% fines, 5% cement and 0.5% fibers, which satisfied the strength requirement given by the ASTM C62 and ASTM C216 standards for construction material. The CSEB’s with 0.5% fiber had higher toughness. The durability was determined by subjecting the CSEBs to wetting and drying cycles. The blocks with 5% cement withstand the durability test as the dry strength was higher than that required for construction use.

The blocks were also submitted to heating and cooling cycles. After 12 cycles, the specimens showed a reduction in strength, which further increased as the number of cycles increased. Finally, the thermal resistivity of fiber reinforced CSEB was found to be higher than that for clay bricks.

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Date Created
  • 2016

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Multiphase fluid flow through porous media: conductivity and geomechanics

Description

The understanding of multiphase fluid flow in porous media is of great importance in many fields such as enhanced oil recovery, hydrology, CO2 sequestration, contaminants cleanup, and natural gas production

The understanding of multiphase fluid flow in porous media is of great importance in many fields such as enhanced oil recovery, hydrology, CO2 sequestration, contaminants cleanup, and natural gas production from hydrate bearing sediments.

In this study, first, the water retention curve (WRC) and relative permeability in hydrate bearing sediments are explored to obtain fitting parameters for semi-empirical equations. Second, immiscible fluid invasion into porous media is investigated to identify fluid displacement pattern and displacement efficiency that are affected by pore size distribution and connectivity. Finally, fluid flow through granular media is studied to obtain fluid-particle interaction. This study utilizes the combined techniques of discrete element method simulation, micro-focus X-ray computed tomography (CT), pore-network model simulation algorithms for gas invasion, gas expansion, and relative permeability calculation, transparent micromodels, and water retention curve measurement equipment modified for hydrate-bearing sediments. In addition, a photoelastic disk set-up is fabricated and the image processing technique to correlate the force chain to the applied contact forces is developed.

The results show that the gas entry pressure and the capillary pressure increase with increasing hydrate saturation. Fitting parameters are suggested for different hydrate saturation conditions and morphologies. And, a new model for immiscible fluid invasion and displacement is suggested in which the boundaries of displacement patterns depend on the pore size distribution and connectivity. Finally, the fluid-particle interaction study shows that the fluid flow increases the contact forces between photoelastic disks in parallel direction with the fluid flow.

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Date Created
  • 2016