Outcrop scale mixing enhanced by permeability variations: the role of stationary and travelling waves of high saturation indices

Köhn D, Kelka U, Toussaint R, Siegel C, Mullen G, Boyce A, Piazolo S (2022)


Publication Type: Journal article

Publication year: 2022

Journal

DOI: 10.1017/S001675682200070X

Abstract

To study the ore mineralization at the outcrop scale we merge an advection-diffusion simulation with the geochemical software iphreeqc to model the mixing of two realistic fluids. We simulate the infiltration of a metal-rich fluid into a rock that is saturated with pore fluid. We test the feedback effects with a number of scenarios based on an outcrop-scale 5 x 5 m model consisting of two high-permeable vertical faults within a low-permeable host rock that lead into a permeable layer. The hot metal-rich fluid enters the model through the faults from below. We solve the advection-diffusion equation for 12 chemical species and temperature, and use iphreeqc to determine the resulting properties of local fluid domains as well as related saturation indices for minerals. The faults in the model act as pathways for the metal-rich fluid, with the infiltrating fluid displacing the pore fluid. Mixing in the model takes place as a function of advection along permeable faults coupled with diffusion of chemical species at the interface between two fluids, while heat diffusion is fast enough (10(3) times faster) to equilibrate temperature. Simulations show a high saturation index of mixing-derived minerals such as barite at the interface between the two fluids as a result of fluid mixing. Fast fluid pathways (i.e. faults) show travelling waves of high saturation indices of barite, while low-permeability zones such as fault walls and areas below less permeable layers experience stationary waves of high saturation indices. Our results show that, depending on the dominant transport process (advection or diffusion), mineralization will localize next to permeability contrasts in zones where local diffusion dominates.

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APA:

Köhn, D., Kelka, U., Toussaint, R., Siegel, C., Mullen, G., Boyce, A., & Piazolo, S. (2022). Outcrop scale mixing enhanced by permeability variations: the role of stationary and travelling waves of high saturation indices. Geological Magazine. https://dx.doi.org/10.1017/S001675682200070X

MLA:

Köhn, Daniel, et al. "Outcrop scale mixing enhanced by permeability variations: the role of stationary and travelling waves of high saturation indices." Geological Magazine (2022).

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