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National Institute of Standards and Technology
Building Materials Division, 226/B348
Gaithersburg, Maryland 20899 USA
It is shown that a mercury porosimetry measurement can be considered as generating a mapping between a real pore structure and a random network of cylindrical tubes. The mapping is shown to preserve the hydraulic conductivity of individual pores having elliptical cross- sections. Thus the assumption of circular cylindrical pores, commonly used to interpret mercury porosimetry results, does not necessarily invalidate the use of these measurements to predict the permeability of porous media with the Katz-Thompson equation. A regular lattice of randomly- sized tubes with elliptical cross-sections is considered as a specific test of these ideas.