Effective porosity in solute-transport analyses is usually estimated rather than calculated from tracer tests in the field or laboratory. Calculated values of effective porosity in the laboratory on three different textured samples were compared to estimates derived from particle-size distributions and soil-water characteristic curves. The agreement was poor and it seems that no clear relationships exist between effective porosity calculated from laboratory tracer tests and effective porosity estimated from particle-size distributions and soil-water characteristic curves. A field tracer test in a sand-and-gravel aquifer produced a calculated effective porosity of approximately 0.17. By comparison, estimates of effective porosity from textural data, moisture retention, and published values were approximately 50-90% greater than the field calibrated value. Thus, estimation of effective porosity for chemical transport is highly dependent on the chosen transport model and is best obtained by laboratory or field tracer tests.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Water Science and Technology
- Earth and Planetary Sciences (miscellaneous)