Estimating the Hydraulic Conductivity of Deep Fractured Rock Strata from High-pressure Injection Tests

  • Zhen HuangEmail author
  • Shijie Li
  • Kui ZhaoEmail author
  • Yun Wu
  • Wei Zeng
  • Hongwei Xu
Technical Article


Deep coal mining in the Yanzhou coalfield is threatened by a confined Ordovician limestone aquifer where water pressure exceeds 10 MPa. High-pressure injection tests are widely used to characterize the hydraulic properties of water-resisting fractured rock strata under such conditions, although estimating hydraulic conductivity remains an issue. This paper presents an approach to estimate it, using data from several high-pressure injection tests by accounting for the flow conditions. Typical PQ curves obtained from the injection tests were summarized and divided into Darcian and non-Darcian flow phases, and an equation was proposed to estimate the hydraulic conductivity of fractured rocks. The hydraulic conductivity is pressure dependent and increased by injection pressure in the non-Darcian flow phase, due to hydraulic fracturing. As one would expect, the hydraulic conductivity estimated using the new equation was much greater than that estimated using Darcy’s law.


Water inrush Hydraulic properties Non-Darcian flow Hydraulic fracturing 

Abschätzung der hydraulischen Leitfähigkeit von tiefen Kluftgesteinen mittels Hochdruckinjektionstests


Der Kohleabbau im Yanzhou Kohlefeld ist durch einen gespannten Kalksteingrundwasserleiter (Ordovizium) mit einem Wasserdruck von über 10 MPa gefährdet. Zur Untersuchung der hydraulischen Eigenschaften wasserbeständiger, geklüfteter Gesteinsschichten werden unter den genannten Bedingungen häufig Hochdruckinjektionstests verwendet. Dennoch bleibt die Abschätzung der hydraulischen Leitfähigkeit ein Problem. Dieser Artikel stellt einen Ansatz zur Abschätzung der hydraulischen Leitfähigkeit mit Daten aus verschiedenen Hochdruckinjektionstests vor. Typische P-Q-Kurven aus Injektionstests wurden zusammengefasst und in Phasen mit Darcy-Strömung und mit Nicht-Darcy-Strömung unterteilt. Zur Abschätzung der hydraulischen Leitfähigkeit von Kluftgesteinen wurde eine Gleichung aufgestellt. Die hydraulische Leitfähigkeit ist druckabhängig und steigt mit zunehmendem Injektionsdruck in der Phase der Nicht-Darcy-Strömung durch hydraulische Kluftbildung an. Die mit der neuen Gleichung ermittelte hydraulische Leitfähigkeit ist erwartungsgemäß höher als die Abschätzung mit Hilfe des Darcy-Gesetzes.

Estimación de la conductividad hidráulica de estratos de roca fracturada profunda a partir de pruebas de inyección a alta presión


La minería profunda de carbón en el campo de Yanzhou está amenazada por un acuífero de piedra caliza ordovícico confinado donde la presión del agua supera los 10 MPa. Las pruebas de inyección a alta presión se utilizan ampliamente para caracterizar las propiedades hidráulicas de los estratos de roca fracturados resistentes al agua en tales condiciones, aunque la estimación de la conductividad hidráulica sigue siendo un problema. Este trabajo presenta un enfoque para estimarlo utilizando datos de varias pruebas de inyección de alta presión al considerar las condiciones de flujo. Las curvas P-Q típicas obtenidas de las pruebas de inyección se resumieron y dividieron en fases de flujo Darciano y no Darciano y se propuso una ecuación para estimar la conductividad hidráulica de las rocas fracturadas. La conductividad hidráulica depende de la presión y se incrementa por la presión de inyección en la fase de flujo no Darciano debido a la fracturación hidráulica. Como era de esperar, la conductividad hidráulica estimada utilizando la nueva ecuación fue mucho mayor que la estimada utilizando la ley de Darcy.






The authors gratefully thank the editors and anonymous reviewers for their valuable and constructive comments in improving this paper. The authors gratefully acknowledge the financial support from the National Natural Science Foundation of China (41702326), the National Postdoctoral Program for Innovative Talents (BX201700113), the China Postdoctoral Science Foundation (2017M620205), the Natural Science Foundation of Jiangxi Province (20171BAB206022), the State Key Laboratory for GeoMechanics and Deep Underground Engineering, China University of Mining & Technology (SKLGDUEK1703), and the Innovative Experts, Long-term Program of Jiangxi Province (jxsq2018106049).


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Resources and Environment EngineeringJiangxi University of Science and TechnologyGanzhouChina
  2. 2.State Key Laboratory for GeoMechanics and Deep Underground EngineeringXuzhouChina
  3. 3.School of Earth Sciences and EngineeringNanjing UniversityNanjingChina

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