Permeability (earth sciences)

Permeability in fluid mechanics and the earth sciences (commonly symbolized as κ, or k) is a measure of the ability of a porous material (often, a rock or an unconsolidated material) to allow fluids to pass through it.

The permeability of a medium is related to the porosity, but also to the shapes of the pores in the medium and their level of connectedness.


Permeability is the property of rocks that is an indication of the ability for fluids (gas or liquid) to flow through rocks. High permeability will allow fluids to move rapidly through rocks. Permeability is affected by the pressure in a rock. The unit of measure is called the darcy, named after Henry Darcy (1803-1858). Sandstones may vary in permeability from less than one to over 50,000 millidarcys (md). Permeabilities are more commonly in the range of tens to hundreds of millidarcies. A rock with 25% porosity and a permeability of 1 md will not yield a significant flow of water. Such “tight” rocks are usually artificially stimulated (fractured or acidized) to create permeability and yield a flow.

Latest News for: Soil permeability


How industry feedback shaped NH's solid waste rules

The Keene Sentinel 09 Jul 2024
Initially, the proposed rule required the soil’s permeability to reflect its natural state, unaffected by excavation or construction activities, accurately capturing its true characteristics ... So if there is a water source beneath the 5 feet, any soil beyond this immediate area is irrelevant, regardless of its permeability characteristics....

Murad stresses proper coordination as he reviews flood situation

The News International 08 Jul 2024
Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah can be seen in this image ... Urban flooding ... However, he pointed out, spells in August are likely to be calm, connected, consecutive and of long durations, which makes them more dangerous because natural depressions, drainage systems and soil permeability are likely to be saturated with earlier spells in July ... ....

Gulf floods highlight region's urgent need for climate action

The New Arab 03 Jul 2024
But the fallout hardly stopped there ... The WWA report observed, “Across both countries, a high degree of surfaces with limited permeability and absorptive capacity from urban developments, inadequate drainage and the hyper-arid soils exacerbate the risk and severity of flash floods.” The authors urged “more proactive urban planning.” ... .......

Most Viewed

President Joe Biden departs after speaking at the NAACP Convention, Tuesday, July 16, 2024, in Las Vegas, Nevada.
White House / Adam Schultz

Biden has Covid: Here’s what an over-80 can expect

Asiatimes | 18 Jul 2024
FILE - Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump reacts following an assassination attempt at a campaign event in Butler, Pa., on Saturday, July 13, 2024. Trump Media surged in the first day of trading, Monday, July 15, following the assassination attempt.
AP / ene J. Puskar, File

Trump, elections and the politics of spectacle

Al Jazeera | 17 Jul 2024
JD Vance speaking with attendees at the 2021 Southwest Regional Conference hosted by Turning Point USA at the Arizona Biltmore in Phoenix, Arizona
Creative Commons / Gage Skidmore https:/

Why did Republican Donald Trump choose JD Vance as his vice president?

Al Jazeera | 18 Jul 2024
SpaceX headquarters at Hawthorne, California. 11 June 2020.
Creative Commons / Steve Jurvetson/https

Elon Musk says he will move companies out of California over trans law

Al Jazeera | 17 Jul 2024