The effect of thickness in the through-diffusion experiment: Final report

Matti Valkiainen, Hannu Aalto, Jarmo Lehikoinen, Kari Uusheimo

Research output: Book/ReportReport


This report contains an experimental study of diffusion in the water-filled pores of rock samples. The samples studied are rapakivi granite from Loviisa, southern Finland. The drill-core sample was sectioned perpendicularly with a diamond saw and three cylindrical samples were obtained. The nominal thicknesses (heights of the cylinders) are 2, 4 and 6 cm. For the diffusion measurement the sample holders were pressed between two chambers. One of the chambers was filled with 0.0044 molar sodium chloride solution spiked with tracers. Another chamber was filled with inactive solution. Tritium (HTO) considered to be a water equivalent tracer and anionic 36Cl were used as tracers. The through diffusion was monitored about 1000 days after which time the diffusion cells were emptied and the sample holders dismantled. The samples were sectioned into 1 cm slices and the tracers were leached from the slices. The porosities of the slices were determined by the weighing method. The rock-capacity factors could be determined from the leaching results obtained. It was seen that the porosity values were in accordance with the rock capacity factors obtained with HTO. An anion exclusion can be seen comparing the results obtained with HTO and 36Cl-. The concentration profile through even the thickest sample had reached a constant slope and the rate of diffusion was practically at a steady state. An anion exclusion effect was also seen in the effective diffusion coefficients. The effect of thickness on diffusion shows that the connectivity of the pores decreases in the thickness range 2 - 4 cm studied. The decrease as reflected in the diffusion coefficient was not dramatic and it can be said that especially for studying chemical interactions during diffusion, the thickness of 2 cm is adequate.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationEspoo
PublisherVTT Technical Research Centre of Finland
Number of pages33
ISBN (Print)951-38-4983-X
Publication statusPublished - 1996
MoE publication typeNot Eligible

Publication series

SeriesVTT Tiedotteita - Meddelanden - Research Notes


  • rocks
  • granite
  • rock mechanics
  • rock properties
  • diffusion
  • porosity
  • water
  • thickness
  • measurement
  • experimentation


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