Mixing-limited reactions in porous media


A. J. Valocchi, Bolster, D., and Werth, C. J., “Mixing-limited reactions in porous media,” Transport in Porous Media, pp. 1-26, 2018.


Mixing-driven reactions in porous media are ubiquitous and span natural and engineered environments, yet predicting where and how quickly reactions occur is immensely challenging due to the complex and nonuniform nature of porous media flows. In particular, in many instances, there is an enormous range of spatial and temporal scales over which reactants can mix. This paper aims to review factors that affect mixing-limited reactions in porous media, and approaches used to predict such processes across scales. We focus primarily on the challenges of mixing-driven reactions in porous media at pore scales to provide a concise, but comprehensive picture. We balance our discussion between state-of-the-art experiments, theory and numerical methods, introducing the reader to factors that affect mixing, focusing on the bracketing cases of transverse and longitudinal mixing. We introduce the governing equations for mixing-limited reactions and then summarize several upscaling methods that aim to account for complex pore-scale flow fields. We conclude with perspectives on where the field is going, along with other insights gleaned from this review.


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