Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
TH_PULSE: Program for Calculating Infiltration of Episodic Liquid
Fingers in Superheated Rock Fractures - Theory, User's Manual and Sample
- Author(s): Birkholzer, Jens T.
- et al.
This report describes the code TH_PULSE developed at the Ernest Orlando Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab). The code handles gravity-driven flow of episodic infiltration events entering above-boiling rock-temperature regions. Such temperature conditions are expected, for example, after emplacement of heat-generating nuclear waste in underground repositories. Complex fluid-flow and heat-transfer phenomena occur, as the infiltrating water is subject to vigorous boiling from the hot rock. A new efficient semi-analytical method is presented herein that simulates such phenomena. It is assumed that flow forms in localized preferential flow paths (referred to as "fingers"). The first section of this report gives the conceptual and mathematical background for the solution scheme. The second section is a user's manual for TH_PULSE, providing all information required to run the code, including a detailed description of the input and output files. In the third section, the new solution scheme is applied to several test cases. Sample simulations are performed for conditions representative of the potential nuclear waste repository at Yucca Mountain, Nevada. A brief summary is given in Section 4.