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A Critical Analysis of Transverse Dispersivity Field Data
UFZ Helmholtz Ctr Environm Res, Permoserstr 15, D-04318 Leipzig, Germany..ORCID iD: 0000-0002-8783-6198
UFZ Helmholtz Ctr Environm Res, Permoserstr 15, D-04318 Leipzig, Germany.;Univ Potsdam, Inst Earth & Environm Sci, Karl Liebknecht Str 24-25, D-14476 Potsdam, Germany..
Univ Trento, Dept Civil Environm & Mech Engn, Via Mesiano 77, I-38123 Trento, Italy..ORCID iD: 0000-0002-7348-8313
KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Sustainable development, Environmental science and Engineering, Resources, Energy and Infrastructure.
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2019 (English)In: Ground Water, ISSN 0017-467X, E-ISSN 1745-6584, Vol. 57, no 4, p. 632-639Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Transverse dispersion, or tracer spreading orthogonal to the mean flow direction, which is relevant e.g, for quantifying bio-degradation of contaminant plumes or mixing of reactive solutes, has been studied in the literature less than the longitudinal one. Inferring transverse dispersion coefficients from field experiments is a difficult and error-prone task, requiring a spatial resolution of solute plumes which is not easily achievable in applications. In absence of field data, it is a questionable common practice to set transverse dispersivities as a fraction of the longitudinal one, with the ratio 1/10 being the most prevalent. We collected estimates of field-scale transverse dispersivities from existing publications and explored possible scale relationships as guidance criteria for applications. Our investigation showed that a large number of estimates available in the literature are of low reliability and should be discarded from further analysis. The remaining reliable estimates are formation-specific, span three orders of magnitude and do not show any clear scale-dependence on the plume traveled distance. The ratios with the longitudinal dispersivity are also site specific and vary widely. The reliability of transverse dispersivities depends significantly on the type of field experiment and method of data analysis. In applications where transverse dispersion plays a significant role, inference of transverse dispersivities should be part of site characterization with the transverse dispersivity estimated as an independent parameter rather than related heuristically to longitudinal dispersivity.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
WILEY , 2019. Vol. 57, no 4, p. 632-639
National Category
Geotechnical Engineering
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URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-255479DOI: 10.1111/gwat.12838ISI: 000474284400013PubMedID: 30381834Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85058855127OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-255479DiVA, id: diva2:1352674
Note

QC 20190919

Available from: 2019-09-19 Created: 2019-09-19 Last updated: 2019-09-19Bibliographically approved

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Cvetkovic, Vladimir

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