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DOI: https://doi.org/10.4491/eer.2020.311
Methane transport in a soil column: experimental and modeling investigation
Chiu-Shia Fen, Yu-Ro Lin, and Chia-Yu Chen
Department of Environmental Engineering and Science, Feng Chia University, Taichung, Taiwan
Corresponding Author: Chiu-Shia Fen ,Tel: +886-4-4517250 (ext. 5218), Email: csfen@fcu.edu.tw
Received: June 5, 2020;  Accepted: October 7, 2020.
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ABSTRACT
This study explored two diffusion approaches, Fick’s law and the dusty gas model (DGM), to assess their differences on modeling methane transport in porous systems. Laboratory experiments were also conducted for methane transport through a nitrogen gas-dry soil column from different source densities. Gas pressures and methane densities at transient state were measured along the column for two transport configurations (horizontal and vertically upward) and compared with the predictions obtained from the DGM- and Fickian-based models. The retardation factor is the only parameter used in the model calibration. The results showed that the methane density profiles predicted by these models fairly matched the measured data and are quite consistent for vertically upward transport of methane. However, the predictions were over the measured ones for horizontal transport of methane. We suspected it is due to incomplete mixing of gas mixture in the inlet chamber since high pressure variations were observed in the horizontal transport experiments. Further, we found that the methane density profile predicted by the Fickian-based model is lagged behind the DGM result for at most 15% of difference in methane density for horizontal transport of methane from a pure methane source.
Keywords: Diffusion | Dusty gas model equations | Fick’s first law | Gas phase transport | Gravitational force | Nonequimolar effect
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