Commenced in January 2007
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Edition: International
Paper Count: 13

Search results for: unsaturated soil

13 Critical Heights of Sloped Unsupported Trenches in Unsaturated Sand

Authors: Won Taek Oh, Adin Richard

Abstract:

Workers are often required to enter unsupported trenches during the construction process, which may present serious risks. Trench failures can result in death or damage to adjacent properties, therefore trenches should be excavated with extreme precaution. Excavation work is often done in unsaturated soils, where the critical height (i.e. maximum depth that can be excavated without failure) of unsupported trenches can be more reliably estimated by considering the influence of matric suction. In this study, coupled stress/pore-water pressure analyses are conducted to investigate the critical height of sloped unsupported trenches considering the influence of pore-water pressure redistribution caused by excavating. Four different wall slopes (1.5V:1H, 2V:1H, 3V:1H, and 90°) and a vertical trench with the top 0.3 m sloped 1:1 were considered in the analyses with multiple depths of the ground water table in a sand. For comparison, the critical heights were also estimated using the limit equilibrium method for the same excavation scenarios used in the coupled analyses.

Keywords: Critical height, matric suction, unsaturated soil, unsupported trench.

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12 Comparison of Different Techniques to Estimate Surface Soil Moisture

Authors: S. Farid F. Mojtahedi, Ali Khosravi, Behnaz Naeimian, S. Adel A. Hosseini

Abstract:

Land subsidence is a gradual settling or sudden sinking of the land surface from changes that take place underground. There are different causes of land subsidence; most notably, ground-water overdraft and severe weather conditions. Subsidence of the land surface due to ground water overdraft is caused by an increase in the intergranular pressure in unconsolidated aquifers, which results in a loss of buoyancy of solid particles in the zone dewatered by the falling water table and accordingly compaction of the aquifer. On the other hand, exploitation of underground water may result in significant changes in degree of saturation of soil layers above the water table, increasing the effective stress in these layers, and considerable soil settlements. This study focuses on estimation of soil moisture at surface using different methods. Specifically, different methods for the estimation of moisture content at the soil surface, as an important term to solve Richard’s equation and estimate soil moisture profile are presented, and their results are discussed through comparison with field measurements obtained from Yanco1 station in south-eastern Australia. Surface soil moisture is not easy to measure at the spatial scale of a catchment. Due to the heterogeneity of soil type, land use, and topography, surface soil moisture may change considerably in space and time.

Keywords: Artificial neural network, empirical method, remote sensing, surface soil moisture, unsaturated soil.

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11 Numerical Analysis of Rapid Drawdown in Dams Based on Brazilian Standards

Authors: Renato Santos Paulinelli Raposo, Vinicius Resende Domingues, Manoel Porfirio Cordao Neto

Abstract:

Rapid drawdown is one of the cases referred to ground stability study in dam projects. Due to the complexity generated by the combination of loads and the difficulty in determining the parameters, analyses of rapid drawdown are usually performed considering the immediate reduction of water level upstream. The proposal of a simulation, considering the gradual reduction in water level upstream, requires knowledge of parameters about consolidation and those related to unsaturated soil. In this context, the purpose of this study is to understand the methodology of collection and analysis of parameters to simulate a rapid drawdown in dams. Using a numerical tool, the study is complemented with a hypothetical case study that can assist the practical use of data compiled. The referenced dam presents homogeneous section composed of clay soil, a height of 70 meters, a width of 12 meters, and upstream slope with inclination 1V:3H.

Keywords: Dam, GeoStudio, rapid drawdown, stability analysis.

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10 Electrokinetic Remediation of Uranium Contaminated Soil by Ion Exchange Membranes

Authors: Z. H. Shi, T. J. Dou, H. Zhang, H. X. Huang, N. Zeng

Abstract:

The contamination of significant quantities of soils and sediments with uranium and other actinide elements as a result of nuclear activity poses many environmental risks. The electrokinetic process is one of the most promising remediation techniques for sludge, sediment, and saturated or unsaturated soils contaminated with heavy metals and radionuclides. However, secondary waste is a major concern for soil contaminated with nuclides. To minimize the generation of secondary wastes, this study used the anion and cation exchange membranes to improve the performance of the experimental apparatus. Remediation experiments of uranium-contaminated soil were performed with different agents. The results show that using acetic acid and EDTA as chelating agents clearly enhances the migration ability of the uranium. The ion exchange membranes (IEMs) used in the experiments not only reduce secondary wastes, but also, keep the soil pH stable.

Keywords: Electrokinetic remediation, ion exchange membranes, soil, uranium.

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9 Determination of Unsaturated Soil Permeability Based on Geometric Factor Development of Constant Discharge Model

Authors: A. Rifa’i, Y. Takeshita, M. Komatsu

Abstract:

After Yogyakarta earthquake in 2006, the main problem that occurred in the first yard of Prambanan Temple is ponding area that occurred after rainfall. Soil characterization needs to be determined by conducting several processes, especially permeability coefficient (k) in both saturated and unsaturated conditions to solve this problem. More accurate and efficient field testing procedure is required to obtain permeability data that present the field condition. One of the field permeability test equipment is Constant Discharge procedure to determine the permeability coefficient. Necessary adjustments of the Constant Discharge procedure are needed to be determined especially the value of geometric factor (F) to improve the corresponding value of permeability coefficient. The value of k will be correlated with the value of volumetric water content (θ) of an unsaturated condition until saturated condition. The principle procedure of Constant Discharge model provides a constant flow in permeameter tube that flows into the ground until the water level in the tube becomes constant. Constant water level in the tube is highly dependent on the tube dimension. Every tube dimension has a shape factor called the geometric factor that affects the result of the test. Geometric factor value is defined as the characteristic of shape and radius of the tube. This research has modified the geometric factor parameters by using empty material tube method so that the geometric factor will change. Saturation level is monitored by using soil moisture sensor. The field test results were compared with the results of laboratory tests to validate the results of the test. Field and laboratory test results of empty tube material method have an average difference of 3.33 x 10-4 cm/sec. The test results showed that modified geometric factor provides more accurate data. The improved methods of constant discharge procedure provide more relevant results.

Keywords: Constant discharge, geometric factor, permeability coefficient, unsaturated soils.

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8 An Experimental Investigation in Effect of Confining Stress and Matric Suction on the Mechanical Behavior of Sand with Different Fine Content

Authors: S. Asreazad

Abstract:

This paper presents the results that the soil volumetric strain and shear strength are closely related to the confining stress and initial matric suction under constant water content testing on the specimens of unsaturated sand with clay and silt fines contents. The silty sand specimens reached their peak strength after a very small axial strain followed by a post-peak softening towards an ultimate value. The post-peak drop in stress increased by an increment of the suction, while there is no peak strength for clayey sand specimens. The clayey sand shows compressibility and possesses ductile stress-strain behaviour. Shear strength increased nonlinearly with respect to matric suction for both soil types. When suction exceeds a certain range, the effect of suction on shear strength increment weakens gradually. Under the same confining stress, the dilatant tendencies in the silty sand increased under lower values of suction and decreased for higher suction values under the same confining stress. However, the amount of contraction increased with increasing initial suction for clayey sand specimens.

Keywords: Unsaturated soils, silty sand, clayey sand, triaxial test, constant water content.

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7 Effect of Crude Oil on Soil-Water Characteristic Curve of Clayey Soil

Authors: Seyed Abolhasan Naeini, Seyed Mohammad Reza Hosseini

Abstract:

The measured soil suction values when related to water content is called suction-water content relationship (SWR) or soil-water characteristic curve (SWCC) and forms the basis of unsaturated soil behavior assessment. The SWCC can be measured or predicted based on soil index properties such as grain-size distribution and plasticity index. In this paper, the SWCC of clean and contaminated clayey soil classified as clay with low plasticity (CL) are presented. Laboratory studies were conducted on virgin (disturbed-uncontaminated soil collected from vicinity of Tehran oil refinery) soil and soil samples simulated to varying degrees of contamination with crude oil (i.e., 3, 6, and 9% by dry weight of soil) to compare the results before and after contamination. Laboratory tests were conducted using a device which is capable of measuring volume change and pore pressures. The soil matric suction at the ends of samples controlled by using the axis translation technique. The results show that contamination with crude oil facilitates the movement of water and reduces the soil suction.

Keywords: Axis translation technique, clayey soil, contamination, crude oil, soil-water characteristic curve.

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6 Effect of Subsequent Drying and Wetting on the Small Strain Shear Modulus of Unsaturated Soils

Authors: A. Khosravi, S. Ghadirian, J. S. McCartney

Abstract:

Evaluation of the seismic-induced settlement of an unsaturated soil layer depends on several variables, among which the small strain shear modulus, Gmax, and soil’s state of stress have been demonstrated to be of particular significance. Recent interpretation of trends in Gmax revealed considerable effects of the degree of saturation and hydraulic hysteresis on the shear stiffness of soils in unsaturated states. Accordingly, the soil layer is expected to experience different settlement behaviors depending on the soil saturation and seasonal weathering conditions. In this study, a semi-empirical formulation was adapted to extend an existing Gmax model to infer hysteretic effects along different paths of the SWRC including scanning curves. The suitability of the proposed approach is validated against experimental results from a suction-controlled resonant column test and from data reported in literature. The model was observed to follow the experimental data along different paths of the SWRC, and showed a slight hysteresis in shear modulus along the scanning curves.

Keywords: Hydraulic hysteresis, Scanning path, Small strain shear modulus, Unsaturated soil.

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5 Statistical Assessment of Models for Determination of Soil – Water Characteristic Curves of Sand Soils

Authors: S. J. Matlan, M. Mukhlisin, M. R. Taha

Abstract:

Characterization of the engineering behavior of unsaturated soil is dependent on the soil-water characteristic curve (SWCC), a graphical representation of the relationship between water content or degree of saturation and soil suction. A reasonable description of the SWCC is thus important for the accurate prediction of unsaturated soil parameters. The measurement procedures for determining the SWCC, however, are difficult, expensive, and timeconsuming. During the past few decades, researchers have laid a major focus on developing empirical equations for predicting the SWCC, with a large number of empirical models suggested. One of the most crucial questions is how precisely existing equations can represent the SWCC. As different models have different ranges of capability, it is essential to evaluate the precision of the SWCC models used for each particular soil type for better SWCC estimation. It is expected that better estimation of SWCC would be achieved via a thorough statistical analysis of its distribution within a particular soil class. With this in view, a statistical analysis was conducted in order to evaluate the reliability of the SWCC prediction models against laboratory measurement. Optimization techniques were used to obtain the best-fit of the model parameters in four forms of SWCC equation, using laboratory data for relatively coarse-textured (i.e., sandy) soil. The four most prominent SWCCs were evaluated and computed for each sample. The result shows that the Brooks and Corey model is the most consistent in describing the SWCC for sand soil type. The Brooks and Corey model prediction also exhibit compatibility with samples ranging from low to high soil water content in which subjected to the samples that evaluated in this study.

Keywords: Soil-water characteristic curve (SWCC), statistical analysis, unsaturated soil.

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4 Influence of Hydraulic Hysteresis on Effective Stress in Unsaturated Clay

Authors: Anuchit Uchaipichat

Abstract:

A comprehensive program of laboratory testing on a compacted kaolin in a modified triaxial cell was perform to investigate the influence of hydraulic hysteresis on effective stress in unsaturated soils. The test data are presented on a range of constant suction shear tests along wetting and drying paths. The values of effective stress parameter χ at different matric suction were determined using the test results. The effect of hydraulic hysteresis phenomenon on the effective stress was observed. The values of effective stress parameter χ obtained from the experiments were compared with those obtained from the expressions proposed in literature.

Keywords: Unsaturated soils, Hydraulic hysteresis, Effectivestress

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3 Strength Characteristics of Shallow Gassy Sand in the Hangzhou Bay

Authors: Wang Yong, Kong Ling-Wei, Guo Ai-Guo

Abstract:

In view of geological origin, formation of the shallow gas reservoir of the Hangzhou Bay, northern Zhejiang Province, eastern China, and original occurrence characteristics of the gassy sand are analyzed. Generally, gassy sand in scale gas reservoirs is in the state of residual moisture content and the approximate scope of initial matric suction of sand ranges about from 0kPa to100kPa. Results based on GDS triaxial tests show that the classical shear strength formulas of unsaturated soil can not effectively describe basic strength characteristics of gassy sand; the relationship between apparent cohesion and matric suction of gassy sand agrees well with the power function, which can reasonably be used to describe the strength of gassy sand. In the stress path of gas release, shear strength of gassy sand will increase and experimental results show the formula proposed in this paper can effectively predict the strength increment. When saturated strength indexes of the sand are used in engineering design, moderate reduction should be considered.

Keywords: Gassy sand, Gas release, Occurrence characteristics, strength

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2 A Hydro-Mechanical Model for Unsaturated Soils

Authors: A. Uchaipichat

Abstract:

The hydro-mechanical model for unsaturated soils has been presented based on the effective stress principle taking into account effects of drying-wetting process. The elasto-plastic constitutive equations for stress-strain relations of the soil skeleton have been established. A plasticity model is modified from modified Cam-Clay model. The hardening rule has been established by considering the isotropic consolidation paths. The effect of dryingwetting process is introduced through the ¤ç parameter. All model coefficients are identified in terms of measurable parameters. The simulations from the proposed model are compared with the experimental results. The model calibration was performed to extract the model parameter from the experimental results. Good agreement between the results predicted using proposed model and the experimental results was obtained.

Keywords: Drying-wetting process, Effective stress, Elastoplasticmodel, Unsaturated soils

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1 Comparison of Finite Difference Schemes for Water Flow in Unsaturated Soils

Authors: H. Taheri Shahraiyni, B. Ataie Ashtiani

Abstract:

Flow movement in unsaturated soil can be expressed by a partial differential equation, named Richards equation. The objective of this study is the finding of an appropriate implicit numerical solution for head based Richards equation. Some of the well known finite difference schemes (fully implicit, Crank Nicolson and Runge-Kutta) have been utilized in this study. In addition, the effects of different approximations of moisture capacity function, convergence criteria and time stepping methods were evaluated. Two different infiltration problems were solved to investigate the performance of different schemes. These problems include of vertical water flow in a wet and very dry soils. The numerical solutions of two problems were compared using four evaluation criteria and the results of comparisons showed that fully implicit scheme is better than the other schemes. In addition, utilizing of standard chord slope method for approximation of moisture capacity function, automatic time stepping method and difference between two successive iterations as convergence criterion in the fully implicit scheme can lead to better and more reliable results for simulation of fluid movement in different unsaturated soils.

Keywords: Finite Difference methods, Richards equation, fullyimplicit, Crank-Nicolson, Runge-Kutta.

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