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Application of the Kozeny-Carman Equation to Permeability Determination for a Glacial Outwash Aquifer, Using Grain-size Analysis

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Permeability (hydraulic conductivity) is a measure of the ability of a porous medium to convey a single fluid or multiphase fluids through its body under a certain hydraulic gradient. In this study, the permeability was determined for the grain-size fractions and the layers of a glacial outwash aquifer and its aeration zone (northern Germany) using grain-size analysis and the Kozeny-Carman equation. The aquifer and the aeration zone are composed of unconsolidated sediments characterized by lateral and vertical heterogeneities. The sediments consist, primarily, of silts, sands and gravels, with a majority of sands and a variety of grain sizes. The permeability of the aquifer and the aeration zone ranges from 2.85 × 10-4 to 4.60 × 10-1 m/s, corresponding to the grain-size fractions, and from 4.02 × 10-6 to 3.35 × 10-2 m/s, corresponding to the layers. These ranges of permeability agree well with those obtained experimentally from pump tests and laboratory measurements. Several empirical equations correlating between various parameters, with coefficients of correlation ranging from 0.65 to 1.0, were obtained.
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Keywords: GLACIAL AQUIFERS; GRAIN-SIZE DISTRIBUTION; KOZENY-CARMAN EQUATION; PERMEABILITY; POROSITY; SPECIFIC SURFACE AREA

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Atlantic Geo-Technology, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada

Publication date: June 1, 2001

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