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Reconstruction of the water content at an interface between compacted bentonite blocks and fractured crystalline bedrock
Department of Physical Geography, Stockholm University, Sweden..
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2016 (English)In: Applied Clay Science, ISSN 0169-1317, E-ISSN 1872-9053Article in journal (Refereed) In press
Abstract [en]

Abstract High-density sodium bentonite combines a low permeability with a swelling behavior, which constitute two important qualities for engineered barriers in geological disposal of spent nuclear fuel. For example, the KBS-3V method developed in Sweden and Finland is planned to include compacted bentonite as the buffer material to embed canisters containing the spent nuclear fuel packages in deposition holes in deep crystalline bedrock. The partially saturated bentonite buffer will then swell as it takes up groundwater from the surrounding rock. It is important to quantify the water content evolution of the installed buffer to correctly predict the development of the swelling pressure and the prevailing conditions (thermal, mechanical, chemical and biological). This study aimed at quantifying the water content profile at the surface of a cylindrical bentonite parcel retrieved after in situ wetting in fractured crystalline bedrock. We demonstrate the possibility of using regression-kriging to quantitatively include spatial information from high-resolution photographs of the retrieved bentonite parcel, where more water saturated areas appear as relatively dark shades, along with bentonite samples, where detailed measurements of water content were performed. The resulting reconstruction is both exact regarding local sample measurements and successful to reproduce features such as intersecting rock fracture traces, visible in the photographs. This level of detail is a key step to gain a deeper understanding of the hydraulic behavior of compacted bentonite barriers in sparsely fractured rock. An improved scanning procedure could further increase the accuracy by reducing errors introduced by the geometrical transformations needed to unfold and stitch the different photographs into a single gray scale map of the bentonite surface. The application of this technique could provide more insights to ongoing and planned experiments with unsaturated bentonite buffers.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2016.
Keyword [en]
Engineered barrier system, Bentonite, Fractured rock, Regression-kriging, Unsaturated flow
National Category
Geosciences, Multidisciplinary
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-321494DOI: 10.1016/j.clay.2016.10.002OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-321494DiVA: diva2:1093333
Available from: 2017-05-05 Created: 2017-05-05 Last updated: 2017-05-08Bibliographically approved

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Dessirier, Benoît
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CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

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Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • harvard1
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf