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Determination of Rock Mass Permeability.
ARMY ENGINEER WATERWAYS EXPERIMENT STATION VICKSBURG MISS
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A knowledge of permeability is required to accurately assess andor predict seepage conditions within a rock mass. This report reviews techniques available for measuring rock mass permeability and provides guidance concerning their application and interpretation. In seepage analyses, the rock mass is commonly modeled as an equivalent porous continuum i.e., the continuum approach with seepage governed by the familiar Darcys law, a linear relationship between flow velocity and hydraulic gradient. Theoretical studies have shown that the continuum approach is not always applicable to rock masses in which flow and permeability are controlled by the locations, orientations, and properties of macroscopic fissures such as joints, fractures, and bedding planes. Laboratory studies indicate that flow within fissures can vary from laminar to turbulent with the type of flow dependent on fissure aperture and roughness, flow velocity, and hydraulic gradient.
APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE