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Computer tomographic analysis of water distribution and flow in porous media


Computer tomography (CT) is the reconstruction by computer of a tomographic plane (slice) of an object. The tomograph is developed from multiple X-ray absorption measurements (scans) made around the periphery of the object. Recent research in soil science indicates that CT, which has been used in the medical field for 17 years, may find applications in assessing the degree of uniformity, or lack thereof, of soils and other porous media, in determining the flow paths of water and solutes through soils and porous materials, and in determing the flow paths of water and solutes to roots of plants. This paper discusses the general concept of CT, some of the capabilities associated with software used to format the CT readings into the desired images, and presents some CT scan data for several draining porous media.

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Paper presented at the Symposium „Biophysical Measurements“ at the American Society of Agronomy Annual Meeting, Anaheim, CA, November, 27–December 1, 1988.—The use of trade names in this publication does not imply endorsement by the North Caroline Agric. Res. Serv. of the product name nor criticism of similar ones not mentioned.

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Cassel, D.K., Brown, J.M. & Johnson, G.A. Computer tomographic analysis of water distribution and flow in porous media. Theor Appl Climatol 42, 223–228 (1990).

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  • Climate Change
  • Waste Water
  • Porous Medium
  • Water Management
  • Water Pollution