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Report No.

Spatial distribution of desaturation around the tunnel predicted by three-dimensional two-phase flow modeling of the degassing process of dissolved gases in groundwater

Miyakawa, Kazuya   ; Yamamoto, Hajime*

The excavation of large-scale underground facilities, such as geological disposal of high-level radioactive waste, creates an excavation damaged zone (EDZ) with cracks around the tunnel. In the EDZ, oxygen invades the bedrock through unsaturated cracks and affects environmental conditions for nuclide migration. When a tunnel is excavated in a geological formation containing a high concentration of dissolved CH$$_{4}$$, such as the Neogene marine sediments, degassed CH$$_{4}$$ prevents oxygen intrusion. However, it may be promoted through gas-phase diffusion through desaturation. The purpose of this study is to illustrate the method of estimating the spatial distribution of desaturation associated with the construction and operation of underground facilities in a stratum that contains a large amount of dissolved CH$$_{4}$$. A sequential excavation analysis that reflected the actual process of 10-year excavation of the Horonobe Underground Research Laboratory (URL) was carried out along with gas-water two-phase flow analysis. The analysis results of the amount of groundwater and gas discharged from the URL were about 100 to 300 m$$^{3}$$ d$$^{-1}$$ and 250 to 350 m$$^{3}$$ d$$^{-1}$$, respectively, as of January 2017. These results showed values close to the observations (100 m$$^{3}$$ d$$^{-1}$$ and 300 m$$^{3}$$ d$$^{-1}$$, respectively). The analysis results of the saturation distribution were relatively high around the 250 m gallery and relatively low around the 350 m gallery, confirming that they are consistent with the in-situ observations. Although there were still technical issues of analysis regarding the conditions for groundwater drainage from the tunnel wall and the method of handling grout effects, the numerical calculation was generally appropriate. Although the results of the saturation distribution associated with the excavation were insufficient as the quantitative evaluation, they were almost correct from a qualitative point of view.



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