The behaviour of subsurface-reservoir porous rocks is a central topic in the resource engineering industry and has relevant applications in hydrocarbon, water production, and CO2 sequestration. One of the key open issues is the effect of deformation on the hydraulic properties of the host rock and, specifically, in saturated environments. This paper presents a novel full-field data set describing the hydro-mechanical properties of porous geomaterials through in situ neutron and X-ray tomography. The use of high-performance neutron imaging facilities such as CONRAD-2 (Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin) allows the tracking of the fluid front in saturated samples, making use of the differential neutron contrast between “normal” water and heavy water. To quantify the local hydro-mechanical coupling, we applied a number of existing image analysis algorithms and developed an array of bespoke methods to track the water front and calculate the 3D speed maps. The experimental campaign performed revealed that the pressure-driven flow speed decreases, in saturated samples, in the presence of pre-existing low porosity heterogeneities and compactant shear-bands. Furthermore, the observed complex mechanical behaviour of the samples and the associated fluid flow highlight the necessity for 3D imaging and analysis.
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