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Geoelectrical inference of mass transfer parameters using temporal moments

by Frederick D. Day-Lewis (
U.S. Geological Survey, Office of Ground Water, Branch of Geophysics, 11 Sherman Place, Unit 5015, Storrs CT 06269

Kamini Singha
The Pennsylvania State University, 311 Deike Building, University Park PA 16802


We present an approach to infer mass-transfer parameters based on (1) an analytical model that relates the temporal moments of mobile and bulk concentration; and (2) a bicontinuum modification to Archie's Law. Whereas conventional geochemical measurements preferentially sample from the mobile domain, electrical resistivity tomography (ERT) is sensitive to bulk electrical conductivity and, thus, electrolytic solute in both the mobile and immobile domains. We demonstrate the new approach, in which temporal moments of co-located mobile-domain conductivity (i.e., conventional sampling) and ERT-estimated bulk conductivity are used to calculate heterogeneous mass-transfer rate and immobile porosity fractions in a series of numerical column experiments.

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Final copy as submitted to Water Resources Research for publication as: Day-Lewis, F.D. and Singha, K., 2008, Geoelectrical inference of mass transfer parameters using temporal moments: Water Resour. Res., 44, W05201, doi:10.1029/2007WR006750.

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