High pressure-high temperature laboratory apparatus for the measurement of deep sea sediment physical properties

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Laboratory equipment has been built which will measure the permeability and thermal conductivity of deep-sea sediments at their in-situ conditions of hydrostatic pressure, temperature, and void ratio. The apparatus has the capability of uniaxially consolidating a sediment sample to simulate compaction within the sediment column, while exposing the specimen to hydrostatic pressures ranging from atmospheric to 62 MPa and to temperatures from 22 to 220°C. The equipment includes a hypodermic needle mounted vertically through the base of the pressure vessel from which thermal conductivity is determined by the needle probe method. The system also features a combination of dead-weight testers which produces a small hydraulic gradient across the sample and permits the measurement of sediment permeability at large hydrostatic pressures. The physical property data generated from this apparatus will be important in understanding the mechanisms of heat transfer through the ocean floor and in analysing the coupled flow of heat and pore fluid in the vicinity of a heat source, such as a radioactive waste canister, buried in the seabed. © 1983.

Publication Title, e.g., Journal

Ocean Engineering