Publication Details

Category Text Publication
Reference Category Journals
DOI 10.5194/sand-1-175-2021
Licence creative commons licence
Title (Primary) AREHS: effects of changing boundary conditions on the development of hydrogeological systems: numerical long-term modelling considering thermal–hydraulic–mechanical(–chemical) coupled effects
Author Kahnt, R.; Konietzky, H.; Nagel, T.; Kolditz, O. ORCID logo ; Jockel, A.; Silbermann, C.B.; Tiedke, F.; Meisel, T.; Rink, K.; Wang, W. ORCID logo ; Zill, F.; Carl, A.; Gabriel, A.D.; Schlegel, M.; Abraham, T.
Journal Safety of Nuclear Waste Disposal
Year 2021
Department ENVINF
Volume 1
Page From 175
Page To 177
Language englisch
Topic T8 Georesources
Supplements https://sand.copernicus.org/articles/1/175/2021/sand-1-175-2021-supplement.pdf
Abstract

Within the framework of the “Gesetz zur Suche und Auswahl eines Standortes für ein Endlager für hochradioaktive Abfälle” (Repository Site Selection Act – StandAG), the geoscientific and planning requirements and criteria for the site selection for a repository for high-active nuclear waste are specified. This includes, among others, the modelling of hydrogeological scenarios such as how future cold and warm periods and associated glaciation events can change the (petro-)physical properties specified in the StandAG as well as the natural hydrogeological properties of the overall system through, for example, reactivation of faults or changes in hydraulic gradients and consequently flow directions.

The main objective of the AREHS (Effects of Changing Boundary Conditions on the Development of Hydrogeological Systems) project, funded by BASE (Federal Office for the Safety of Nuclear Waste Management; FKZ 4719F10402), is to model the effects of changing external boundary conditions on the hydrogeologically relevant parameters and effects (e.g. hydraulic permeability, porosity, migration pathways, fluid availability, hydraulic gradients) of a generic geological repository in Germany in all three potential host rocks (clay, salt and crystalline rocks) and its surrounding hydrogeological setting (Table 1). Special attention is paid to the cyclic mechanical loading and unloading due to glaciation events and the resulting stress changes (M), as well as induced temperature effects (T) due to permafrost and warm periods. As such processes can cause changes in the coupled far-field regime with groundwater flow and groundwater supply (H), as well as fluid transport due to thermal (T) and chemical (C) gradients, and reactivate faults/fractures (M) and thus create new/additional pathways, they are particularly relevant to the integrity of a repository over a period of 1 million years and must be properly captured with coupled THM(C) modelling. Before a model is set up for the different host rocks, a detailed assessment of relevant processes has been conducted based on NEA-2019 FEP catalogue (NEA, 2019) for high-level waste repositories.

The modelling is performed using generic 3D models of typical host rock formations satisfying the StandAG criteria. Although the models for salt and clay rock have been adapted from generic models from recent research projects, for crystalline rock a new generic model had to be developed (Fig. 1) considering discontinuities of different scales that have to be incorporated into the THM(C) models explicitly as DFN (Discrete Fracture Network) networks. This is done by coupling two numerical codes: DFN-lab and 3DEC.

A central phase in the overall modelling process is the benchmarking of the models with data from existing models and with field-scale studies. This is done separately for all three host rocks.

In addition to extending the modelling capacities for glaciation processes and verifying by corresponding benchmarking tests (analytical solutions and literature comparisons), automated workflows have been developed to generate OpenGeoSys models from GOCAD structure models. Script-based automated workflows improve software quality for site investigation, especially in a sense of modularization as well as reproducibility. The generic workflow concept is currently being tested for the literature-based benchmarks and will, therefore, support a persistent and sustainable benchmarking procedure in the future.

Persistent UFZ Identifier https://www.ufz.de/index.php?en=20939&ufzPublicationIdentifier=25616
Kahnt, R., Konietzky, H., Nagel, T., Kolditz, O., Jockel, A., Silbermann, C.B., Tiedke, F., Meisel, T., Rink, K., Wang, W., Zill, F., Carl, A., Gabriel, A.D., Schlegel, M., Abraham, T. (2021):
AREHS: effects of changing boundary conditions on the development of hydrogeological systems: numerical long-term modelling considering thermal–hydraulic–mechanical(–chemical) coupled effects
Saf. Nucl. Waste Disposal 1 , 175 - 177