Publication Date


Document Type


Committee Members

David Dominic (Advisor)

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Porosity and permeability are parameters that affect the flow of ground water in the subsurface and have significant implications on the modeling of fate and transport of contaminants. However, little has been done to quantitatively examine the effect on porosity and permeability of packing in bimodal mixtures of natural sediment. This study compares measurements of porosity and permeability on model bimodal sediment mixtures with predictions from petrophysical models. The main goal is to evaluate how well these petrophysical models predict porosity and permeability in bimodal mixtures of natural sediment. The effect of the volume fraction of fines on porosity and permeability within bimodal sediment mixtures using natural grain size components will also be examined. First, I took measurements on the mixtures to determine porosity values. Then I compared these values to those predicted by the expanded fractional packing model for porosity. The expanded fractional packing model for porosity represents mixtures in which finer grains approach the size of the voids among the pre-mixed coarser grains. Next, I utilized a grain size statistical method to derive estimates for permeability, using the measured porosity values. I then compared these estimates to measured permeability values. I took permeability measurements on the mixtures using air- and water-based methods. Finally, I made conclusions about the petrophysical models for porosity and permeability to determine whether or not they were applicable to natural sediment. These conclusions will help to improve the confidence in estimating the parameters of porosity and permeability.

Page Count


Department or Program

Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences

Year Degree Awarded