Predicting the entire soil-water characteristic curve using measurements within low suction range Predicting the entire soil-water characteristic curve using measurements within low suction range

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Vol16 No.5: 1198-1214

Title】Predicting the entire soil-water characteristic curve using measurements within low suction range

Author】YE Yun-xue1; ZOU Wei-lie1,2*; HAN Zhong1; LIU Xiao-wen3

Addresses】1 School of Civil Engineering, Wuhan University, Wuhan 430072, China; 2 School of Civil Engineering, Xijing University, Xi'an 710123, China; 3 School of Architectural Engineering, Nanchang University, Nanchang 330031, China

Corresponding author】ZOU Wei-lie

Citation】Ye YX, Zou WL, Han Z, et al. (2019) Predicting the entire soil-water characteristic curve using measurements within low suction range. Journal of Mountain Science 16(5). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11629-018-5233-6

DOI】https://doi.org/10.1007/s11629-018-5233-6

Abstract】The soil-water characteristic curve (SWCC) is widely used in the design and evaluation in the practice of geotechnical and geoenvironmental engineering such as the slope stability under the influence of environmental factors.The SWCC has distinct features in the capillary and adsorption zones due to different physical mechanisms. Measurements of the SWCC are typically limited within the capillary zone (i.e., low suction range). It is cumbersome and time-consuming to measure the SWCC in the adsorption zone (i.e., high suction range). This study presents a simple method to predict the entire SWCC within both the capillary and adsorption zones, using measured data only from low suction range (e.g., from 0 to 500 kPa). Experimental studies were performed ona completely weathered granite residual soil to determine its entire SWCC from saturated to dry conditions. The resultant SWCC, along with the SWCC measurements of 14 soils reported in the literature, were used to validate the proposed method. The results indicate that the proposed method has good consistency with a wide array of measured data used in this study. The proposed method is easy to use as it only requires a simple parameter calibration for a commonly used SWCC model. It can be used to improve the reliability in the prediction of the SWCC over the entire suction range when measurements are limited within the low suction range.

Keywords】Unsaturated soils; Soil-water characteristic curve; Capillary; Adsorption; Prediction