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Simulation of liquid-liquid interfaces in porous media

Abstract : The properties of the interface of two immiscible fluids play an important role in several processessuch as membrane supported liquid extraction, enhance oil recovery, aquifer remediation, etc. In thispaper the spatial distribution of two immiscible liquids in non-dispersive contact via a porous media isstudied by using numerical simulations. The simulations are carried at pore-scale by minimizing the totalinterfacial energy using the simulated annealing method. This technique allows us to compute the spatialdistribution of fluids in the pores without assuming the geometry of the solid or the interface. The studiedsolids are made of randomly packed spheres either monodispersed or bi-dispersed. The effect of pore sizedistribution, tortuosity, porosity and contact angle on the liquid–liquid interface extent and geometryis analyzed. The simulations demonstrate that liquid–liquid interface follows a simple linear correlationwith the contact angle. At low contact angle the wetting phase extents into the non-wetting phase formingpendular liquid bridges. The continuity of the phases is evaluated. The liquid–liquid interface is mostlycontinuous for all the contact angles.
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Edder García, Pascal Boulet, Renaud Denoyel, Jérôme Anquetil, Gilles Borda, et al.. Simulation of liquid-liquid interfaces in porous media. Colloids and Surfaces A: Physicochemical and Engineering Aspects, Elsevier, 2016, 496, pp.28 - 38. ⟨10.1016/j.colsurfa.2015.10.047⟩. ⟨hal-01476939⟩

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