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Degenerate equations in a diffusion–precipitation model for clogging porous media

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  18 December 2019

Friedrich–Alexander Universität Erlangen–Nürnberg, Department of Mathematics, Cauerstraße 11, 91058Erlangen, Germany, email:
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In this article, we consider diffusive transport of a reactive substance in a saturated porous medium including variable porosity. Thereby, the evolution of the microstructure is caused by precipitation of the transported substance. We are particularly interested in analysing the model when the equations degenerate due to clogging. Introducing an appropriate weighted function space, we are able to handle the degeneracy and obtain analytical results for the transport equation. Also the decay behaviour of this solution with respect to the porosity is investigated. There a restriction on the decay order is assumed, that is, besides low initial concentration also dense precipitation leads to possible high decay. We obtain nonnegativity and boundedness for the weak solution to the transport equation. Moreover, we study an ordinary differential equation (ODE) describing the change of porosity. Thereby, the control of an appropriate weighted norm of the gradient of the porosity is crucial for the analysis of the transport equation. In order to obtain global in time solutions to the overall coupled system, we apply a fixed point argument. The problem is solved for substantially degenerating hydrodynamic parameters.

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