Three-dimensional inversion of pneumatic tests in fractured rocks

V. V. Vesselinov, S. P. Neuman, W. A. Illman, G. A. Zyvoloski

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


A three-dimensional geostatistically-based numerical inverse model was developed for the interpretation of cross-hole pneumatic tests in unsaturated fractured tuffs at the Apache Leap Research Site (ALRS) in Arizona, USA. The model combines a finite-volume flow simulator, FEHM, an automatic mesh generator, X3D, a parallelized version of an automatic parameter estimator, PEST, and a geostatistical code, GSTAT. The tests are simulated by considering singel-phase airflow through an equivalent stochastic porous continuum. The simulator accounts directly for the ability of all packed-off borehole intervals to store and conduct air through the system. Computations are performed in parallel on a supercomputer using 32 processors. We analyze data from several pneumatic cross-hole tests simultaneously to assess the spatial distribution of air permeability and air-filled porosity throughout the test volume. The analysis amounts to three-dimensional pneumatic 'tomography' or stochastic imaging of the rock, a concept originally proposed in connection with hydraulic cross-hole tests in fractured crystalline rocks by Neuman (1987).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationComputational methods in water resources - Volume 1 - Computational methods for subsurface flow and transport
EditorsL.R. Bentley, J.F. Sykes, C.A. Brebbia, W.G. Gray, G.F. Pinder, L.R. Bentley, J.F. Sykes, C.A. Brebbia, W.G. Gray, G.F. Pinder
Number of pages8
ISBN (Print)9058091244
StatePublished - 2000
EventComputational Methods in Water Resources XIII - Calgary, Canada
Duration: Jun 25 2000Jun 29 2000


OtherComputational Methods in Water Resources XIII

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Earth and Planetary Sciences
  • General Engineering
  • General Environmental Science


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