Through-electromigration: a new method of investigating pore connectivity and obtaining formation factors

J Contam Hydrol. 2006 Oct 10;87(3-4):237-52. doi: 10.1016/j.jconhyd.2006.05.006. Epub 2006 Jul 12.


The retardation of radionuclides and other contaminants in fractured crystalline rock is strongly associated with the diffusive properties of the rock matrix. At present, the scientific community is divided concerning the question of long-range pore connectivity in intrusive igneous rock. This paper presents a fast new method, called the through-electromigration method, of obtaining formation factors and investigating pore connectivity. The method involves the migration of an ionic tracer through a rock sample with an electrical potential gradient as the main driving force. The method is analogous to the through-diffusion method but the experimental time is reduced by orders of magnitude. This enables investigations of pore connectivity, as measurements can be made on longer samples. In a preliminary investigation, the new method is compared to the traditional through-diffusion method as well as to rock resistivity methods. The diffusive properties of nine granitic rock samples from Laxemar in Sweden, ranging from 15 to 121 mm in length, have been investigated and the results are compared.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Diffusion
  • Electrochemotherapy
  • Iodine Radioisotopes / chemistry
  • Porosity
  • Silicon Dioxide / chemistry*
  • Sweden
  • Water Movements
  • Water Pollutants, Radioactive / chemistry


  • Iodine Radioisotopes
  • Water Pollutants, Radioactive
  • granite
  • Silicon Dioxide