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Title: Core analyses for selected samples from the Culebra Dolomite at the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant site

Abstract

Two groups of core samples from the Culebra Dolomite Member of the Rustler Formation at and near the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant were analyzed to provide estimates of hydrologic parameters for use in flow-and-transport modeling. Whole-core and core-plug samples were analyzed by helium porosimetry, resaturation and porosimetry, mercury-intrusion porosimetry, electrical-resistivity techniques, and gas-permeability methods. 33 refs., 25 figs., 10 tabs.

Authors:
;  [1]
  1. (INTERA, Inc., Austin, TX (USA))
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Sandia National Labs., Albuquerque, NM (USA); INTERA, Inc., Austin, TX (USA)
Sponsoring Org.:
DOE/DP
OSTI Identifier:
6127668
Report Number(s):
SAND-90-7011
ON: DE91006752
DOE Contract Number:
AC04-76DP00789
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
12 MANAGEMENT OF RADIOACTIVE AND NON-RADIOACTIVE WASTES FROM NUCLEAR FACILITIES; 58 GEOSCIENCES; DOLOMITE; GEOLOGY; DRILL CORES; PERMEABILITY; POROSITY; COMPILED DATA; FLOW MODELS; GRAIN DENSITY; GROUND WATER; PHYSICAL PROPERTIES; SAMPLING; SITE CHARACTERIZATION; WIPP; ALKALINE EARTH METAL COMPOUNDS; CALCIUM CARBONATES; CALCIUM COMPOUNDS; CARBON COMPOUNDS; CARBONATE MINERALS; CARBONATES; CRYSTAL STRUCTURE; DATA; FUNCTIONAL MODELS; HYDROGEN COMPOUNDS; INFORMATION; MAGNESIUM CARBONATES; MAGNESIUM COMPOUNDS; MATHEMATICAL MODELS; MICROSTRUCTURE; MINERALS; NATIONAL ORGANIZATIONS; NUCLEAR FACILITIES; NUMERICAL DATA; OXYGEN COMPOUNDS; PILOT PLANTS; RADIOACTIVE WASTE FACILITIES; UNDERGROUND FACILITIES; US DOE; US ORGANIZATIONS; WATER; 052002* - Nuclear Fuels- Waste Disposal & Storage; 580000 - Geosciences

Citation Formats

Kelley, V.A., and Saulnier, G.J. Jr. Core analyses for selected samples from the Culebra Dolomite at the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant site. United States: N. p., 1990. Web. doi:10.2172/6127668.
Kelley, V.A., & Saulnier, G.J. Jr. Core analyses for selected samples from the Culebra Dolomite at the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant site. United States. doi:10.2172/6127668.
Kelley, V.A., and Saulnier, G.J. Jr. Thu . "Core analyses for selected samples from the Culebra Dolomite at the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant site". United States. doi:10.2172/6127668. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/6127668.
@article{osti_6127668,
title = {Core analyses for selected samples from the Culebra Dolomite at the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant site},
author = {Kelley, V.A. and Saulnier, G.J. Jr.},
abstractNote = {Two groups of core samples from the Culebra Dolomite Member of the Rustler Formation at and near the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant were analyzed to provide estimates of hydrologic parameters for use in flow-and-transport modeling. Whole-core and core-plug samples were analyzed by helium porosimetry, resaturation and porosimetry, mercury-intrusion porosimetry, electrical-resistivity techniques, and gas-permeability methods. 33 refs., 25 figs., 10 tabs.},
doi = {10.2172/6127668},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {Thu Nov 01 00:00:00 EST 1990},
month = {Thu Nov 01 00:00:00 EST 1990}
}

Technical Report:

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  • The use of sorbing tracers in a field hydrologic test is a method of estimating the nuclide transport characteristics at one location in the Culebra dolomite at the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP) site. The Culebra is considered to be the principal continuous pathway from the site in the event of a breach of the planned nuclear-waste repository. To prepare for such a tracer test, data evaluation and design calculations are necessary to estimate the principal parameters governing solute transport and the quantity and geochemical character of potential tracers. The following report represents the first step in preparing for amore » sorbing tracer test, namely a preliminary analysis which considers: (1) the selection of the best location for the first test at the WIPP site; (2) an evaluation of a conservative tracer test at the recommended site to provide estimates of the physical solute-transport parameters; (3) a hydrogeochemical and mineralogic characterization of the Culebra dolomite; (4) the rationale and recipe for the tracer-injection solution; (5) the compilation of a list of potential sorbing and conservative tracers; and (6) the identification of other needs before fielding the sorbing tracer test. The appendix to this report contains the thermodynamic data base used to support the geochemical model (PHREEQE) used in this study.« less
  • The ability of radionuclide-rock interactions to retard the migration of plutonium and uranium within clay-lined fractures in the Culebra Dolomite Member of the Rustler Formation is being estimated in support of the performance assessment of the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant. This paper describes progress in three coordinated studies: characterization of the properties of the groundwater and minerals in the Culebra that will control radionuclide retardation; development of a thermodynamic model for the adsorption of uranium onto corrensite, the mixed chlorite-smectite clay mineral found in Culebra fractures; and development of a data base of equilibrium constants and interaction parameters for calculationsmore » of the aqueous speciation of uranium and plutonium in Na--Cl--Ca--SO{sub 4}--CO{sub 3} solutions which contain organic ligands such as EDTA and range in ionic strength from approximately 0.8 to 6.0 molal. 22 refs., 6 figs., 1 tab.« less
  • Site-characterization, data interpretation, and modeling efforts have been conducted for the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP), a US Department of Energy facility, in southeastern New Mexico as part of the evaluation of the suitability of the bedded salt of the Salado Formation for isolation of defense transuranic wastes. The Culebra Dolomite Member of the Rustler Formation is the most transmissive and laterally continuous hydrogeologic unit above the Salado Formation and is considered to be the principal offsite pathway for radionuclide transport in the subsurface, should a breach of the repository occur. The potential importance of this offsite pathway has motivatedmore » the design and implementation of tests to characterize the solute-transport properties of the Culebra dolomite. On a regional scale, long-term pumping tests have been performed and analyzed to provide information concerning the broad hydrologic flow characteristics of the Culebra dolomite. At the local (or hydropad) scale, conservative (i.e., nonreactive) tracer tests have been performed to characterize the solute-transport properties of the Culebra dolomite. The tracer-test interpretations presented in this report were performed by INTERA Inc. under contract to SNL. The tracer tests and their interpretation provide data for use in performance-assessment calculations of site suitability for waste isolation. In particular, transport parameters determined from these tests are used as input for offsite solute-transport simulations.« less
  • Tracer tests utilizing conservative organic tracers have been conducted in the Culebra Dolomite Member of the Rustler Formation at the locations of the H-2, H-3, H-4,and H-6 hydropads. The objective of this report is to present a quantitative evaluation of the physical solute-transport parameters of the Culebra dolomite at the H-3 and H-4 hydropad locations from interpretation of the tracer-test data. The tracer-test configurations consisted of a pumping well and two tracer-addition wells arranged in approximate equilateral triangles with 30-m sides. The transport of organic tracers from the tracer-addition wells to the pumping wells was analyzed using the finite-difference modelmore » SWIFT II, which is capable of simulating single- and double-porosity flow and transport. 75 refs., 17 tabs.« less
  • This report provides (1) an overview of all tracer testing conducted in the Culebra Dolomite Member of the Rustler Formation at the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WPP) site, (2) a detailed description of the important information about the 1995-96 tracer tests and the current interpretations of the data, and (3) a summary of the knowledge gained to date through tracer testing in the Culebra. Tracer tests have been used to identify transport processes occurring within the Culebra and quantify relevant parameters for use in performance assessment of the WIPP. The data, especially those from the tests performed in 1995-96, providemore » valuable insight into transport processes within the Culebra. Interpretations of the tracer tests in combination with geologic information, hydraulic-test information, and laboratory studies have resulted in a greatly improved conceptual model of transport processes within the Culebra. At locations where the transmissivity of the Culebra is low (< 4 x 10{sup -6} m{sup 2}/s), we conceptualize the Culebra as a single-porosity medium in which advection occurs largely through the primary porosity of the dolomite matrix. At locations where the transmissivity of the Culebra is high (> 4 x 10{sup -6} m{sup 2}/s), we conceptualize the Culebra as a heterogeneous, layered, fractured medium in which advection occurs largely through fractures and solutes diffuse between fractures and matrix at multiple rates. The variations in diffusion rate can be attributed to both variations in fracture spacing (or the spacing of advective pathways) and matrix heterogeneity. Flow and transport appear to be concentrated in the lower Culebra. At all locations, diffusion is the dominant transport process in the portions of the matrix that tracer does not access by flow.« less