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Permeability of porous materials determined from the Euler characteristic.

Physical review letters (2013-02-02)
Christian Scholz, Frank Wirner, Jan Götz, Ulrich Rüde, Gerd E Schröder-Turk, Klaus Mecke, Clemens Bechinger
ABSTRACT

We study the permeability of quasi-two-dimensional porous structures of randomly placed overlapping monodisperse circular and elliptical grains. Measurements in microfluidic devices and lattice Boltzmann simulations demonstrate that the permeability is determined by the Euler characteristic of the conducting phase. We obtain an expression for the permeability that is independent of the percolation threshold and shows agreement with experimental and simulated data over a wide range of porosities. Our approach suggests that the permeability explicitly depends on the overlapping probability of grains rather than their shape.

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