Institute of Geophysics of the CAS, v. v. i.

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Microporosity

Studies on oriented microporosity and its relation to elastic properties and permeability

The Earth's upper crust contains rocks with microscopic pores, whose orientation and volume correspond to deformation history of the rocks. These micropores are responsible for some important features including decreased tensile and shear strength, or increased permeability for fluids. Unlike for meso- or macroscopical brittle structures, the direct analysis of such small-size discontinuities is difficult because it requires a 3D geometric description in microscale. For this purpose, we apply the pulse transmission technique using special ultrasound apparatus designed for 3D measurements of seismic properties on spherical samples.

The results of this research is applied in testing the homogeneity of rock massifs used as repositories of chemical or nuclear waste and can be used in number of other contexts: seismology (the effect of microcracks on seismic properties of rocks), geotechnical applications (including effects on underground storage reservoirs, tunnels etc.), deeper Earth systems (such as a role of microcracks in seismogenic zones or during metamorphism) etc.

Micropores – elastic properties – permeability

Links:

Laboratory study on relations between rock microstructure and permeability

The influence of microstructure geometry on 3D seismic properties

More on apparatus for 3D investigation of seismic properties of rock

Research team: Matěj Machek, Martin Staněk

Technician: Lukáš Padjen

This research is carried out with cooperation of David Mainprice from the University of Montpellier, France.