Advertisement

Journal of Soils and Sediments

, Volume 19, Issue 2, pp 652–667 | Cite as

Applicability of cavity-throat connecting model for estimating the hydraulic conductivity of fine-grained soils: a geometrical and mathematical approach

  • Yiqun TangEmail author
  • Jie XuEmail author
  • Jie Zhou
Soils, Sec 2 • Global Change, Environ Risk Assess, Sustainable Land Use • Research Article
  • 74 Downloads

Abstract

Purpose

Determining the hydraulic conductivity of low permeable fine-grained soils is difficult and time-consuming. This work develops a new method with an eye to the pore morphology to correlate hydraulic conductivity with pore-size distribution (PSD) parameters obtained from mercury porosimeter data. In order to realize this method, calculating percolation loss along the flow paths in pore channels and quantifying the spatial morphology of pore channels by proposing a cavity-throat connecting model is necessary.

Materials and methods

In order to establish the standard process of the new method, a kind of sedimentary mucky clay with regular dual-structural PSD has been collected. The samples are divided into three series: (a) vibrated with variable frequencies; (b) frozen at variable temperatures and unfrozen, making the freezing-thawing effect as the variable; and (c) remolded with different water contents. The PSD of freeze-dried samples at the end of each process is obtained by mercury intrusion porosimetry. After that, the method is demonstrated with application to 12 series of fine-grained soils.

Results and discussion

Deduced from mercury porosimeter data, the volume-based PSD curves of fine-grained soils are bimodal, due to the presence of inter-aggregate and intra-aggregate pores. Two important hypotheses have been proposed: (i) one is that in the smaller pore scales, the experimental extrusion curve controlled by the hysteresis loop has a really approximate part compared to the theoretical overall retraction curve, making the experimental extrusion curve characterize the pore cavity size approximately, and (ii) the pore system consists of a series of multistage cavity-throat connections. Accumulating the effects of single connection on the percolation can be used to measure the overall effects of pore system on the percolation. Based on fluid-driven path analysis of percolation, the pore system is quantified by a series of cavity-throat connections and the percolation loss has been derived to estimate the hydraulic conductivity.

Conclusions

The permeable parameter (κ) representing the overall effects of pore connections on the hydraulic conductivity (K) is suited to correlate the microstructure and hydraulic conductivity by the linear relationship with the fixed slope in semilogarithmic coordinate for the fine-grained soils. It is the destruction and recombination of cavity-throat connections that are dominant during the treatments like freezing, remolding, and reinforcing.

Keywords

Cavity-throat connection Hysteresis Percolation loss Permeable parameter Pore-size distribution 

Notes

Acknowledgments

The work presented in this paper was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant No. 41572285) and International Exchange Program for Graduate Students, Tongji University.

References

  1. Ahuja LR, Naney JW, Green RE, Nielsen DR (1984) Macroporosity to characterize spatial variability of hydraulic conductivity and effects of land management. Soil Sci Soc Am J 48:699–702Google Scholar
  2. Androutsopoulos GP, Salmas CE (2000) Tomography of macro-meso-pore structure based on mercury porosimetry hysteresis. Chem Eng Commun 181(1):137–177Google Scholar
  3. Arya LM, Heitman JL, Thapa BB, Bowman DC (2010) Predicting saturated hydraulic conductivity of golf course sands from particle-size distribution. Soil Sci Soc Am J 74(1):33–37Google Scholar
  4. Bartoli F, Bird NRA, Gomendy V, Vivier H, Niquet S (1999) The relation between silty soil structures and their mercury porosimetry curve counterparts: fractals and percolation. Eur J Soil Sci 50(1):9–22Google Scholar
  5. Benavente D, Pla C, Cueto N, Galvañ S, Martínez-Martínez J, García-Del-Cura MA, Ordóñez S (2015) Predicting water permeability in sedimentary rocks from capillary imbibition and pore structure. Eng Geol 195:301–311Google Scholar
  6. Bernabé Y, Li M, Maineult A (2010) Permeability and pore connectivity: a new model based on network simulations. J Geophys Res Solid Earth 115(B10):172–186Google Scholar
  7. Bolton AJ, Maltman AJ, Fisher Q (2000) Anisotropic permeability and bimodal pore-size distributions of fine-grained marine sediments. Mar Pet Geol 17:657–672Google Scholar
  8. Burdine NT (1953) Relative permeability calculations from pore-size distribution data. J Pet Technol 5(3):71–78Google Scholar
  9. Chapuis RP (2004) Predicting the saturated hydraulic conductivity of sand and gravel using effective diameter and void ratio. Can Geotech J 41(5):787–795Google Scholar
  10. Childs EC, Collis-George N (1950) The permeability of porous materials. Proc R Soc London Series A 201(1066):392–405Google Scholar
  11. Cuisinier O, Auriol JC, Borgne TL, Deneele D (2011) Microstructure and hydraulic conductivity of a compacted lime-treated soil. Eng Geol 123(3):187–193Google Scholar
  12. Deng YF, Yue XB, Liu SY, Chen YG, Zhang DW (2015) Hydraulic conductivity of cement-stabilized marine clay with metakaolin and its correlation with pore-size distribution. Eng Geol 193:146–152Google Scholar
  13. Diamond S (1970) Pore-size distributions in clays. Clay Clay Miner 18(1):7–23Google Scholar
  14. Drozdov VA, Baklanova ON, Likholobov VA, Chirkova OA, Gulyaeva TI (2009) Developing the synthesis of homogeneously microporous carbon membranes for selective extraction and accumulation of organic molecules with a carbon unit as a carrier. Prot Met Phys Chem+ 45(2):191–196Google Scholar
  15. Garcia-Bengochea I, Lovell CW, Altschaeffl AG (1979) Pore distribution and permeability of silty clay. J Geotech Eng Div 105(7):839–856Google Scholar
  16. Giesche H (2006) Mercury porosimetry: a general (practical) overview. Part Part Syst Charact 23(1):9–19Google Scholar
  17. Houben ME, Desbois G, Urai JL (2013) Pore morphology and distribution in the shaly facies of Opalinus Clay (Mont Terri, Switzerland): insights from representative 2D BIB–SEM investigations on mm to nm scale. Appl Clay Sci 71(1):82–97Google Scholar
  18. Ioannidis MA, Chatzis IA (1993) Mixed-percolation model of capillary hysteresis and entrapment in mercury porosimetry. J Colloid Interface Sci 161(2):278–291Google Scholar
  19. Jiang MJ, Zhang FG, Hu HJ, Cui YJ, Peng JB (2014) Structural characterization of natural loess and remolded loess under triaxial tests. Eng Geol 181:249–260Google Scholar
  20. Jivkov AP, Hollis C, Etiese F, Mcdonald SA, Withers PJ (2013) A novel architecture for pore network modelling with applications to permeability of porous media. J Hydrol 486(4):246–258Google Scholar
  21. Juang CH, Holtz RD (1986) A probabilistic permeability model and the pore size density function. Int J Numer Anal Methods Geomech 10(5):543–553Google Scholar
  22. Katz AJ, Thompson AH (1986) Quantitative prediction of permeability in porous rock. Phys Rev B 34(11):8179–8181Google Scholar
  23. Lapierre C, Leroueil S, Locat J (1990) Mercury intrusion and permeability of Louiseville clay. Can Geotech J 27(6):761–773Google Scholar
  24. Leonards GA (eds) (1962) Engineering properties of soils. In: Foundation engineering. McGraw-Hill Book Company, New York, pp 66–240Google Scholar
  25. Li X, Zhang LM (2009) Characterization of dual-structure pore-size distribution of soil. Can Geotech J 46(46):129–141Google Scholar
  26. Lindquist WB, Venkatarangan A, Dunsmuir J, Wong TF (2000) Pore and throat size distributions measured from synchrotron x-ray tomographic images of Fontainebleau sandstones. J Geophys Res Solid Earth 105(B9):21509–21527Google Scholar
  27. Lowell S, Shields JE (1991) Powder surface area and porosity. Chapman and Hall, London, pp 1–249Google Scholar
  28. Ma CM, He ZK, Li Q, Zhang HZ, Liu CF (2017) Experimental study on water seepage law in the tension saturated zone. J Soils Sediments 17(6):1644–1652Google Scholar
  29. Mallants D, Mohanty P, Vervoort A, Feyan J (1997) Spatial analysis of saturated hydraulic conductivity in a soil with macropores. Soil Technol 10(2):115–131Google Scholar
  30. Marshall TJ (1958) A relation between permeability and size distribution of pores. Eur J Soil Sci 9(1):1–8Google Scholar
  31. Metelková Z, Boháč J, Sedlářová I, Přikryl R (2011) Changes of pore size and of hydraulic conductivity by adding lime in compacting clay liners. Geotechnical engineering: new horizons. Proceedings of the 21st European Young Geotechnical Engineers Conference, Rotterdam, pp 1–6Google Scholar
  32. Moro F, Böhni H (2002) Ink-bottle effect in mercury intrusion porosimetry of cement-based materials. J Colloid Interface Sci 246(1):135–148Google Scholar
  33. Musso G, Vecchia GD, Romero E (2013) Double-structure effects on the chemo-hydro-mechanical behaviour of a compacted active clay. Géotechnique 63(3):206–220Google Scholar
  34. Nikolakis V, Tsakiroglou CD (2005) Interpretation of the transport properties of α-Al2O3 supports in terms of pore structure characteristics. Ind Eng Chem Res 44(7):2333–2342Google Scholar
  35. Ninjgarav E, Chung SG, Jang WY, Ryu CK (2007) Pore-size distribution of Pusan clay measured by mercury intrusion porosimetry. KSCE J Civ Eng 11(3):133–139Google Scholar
  36. Nishiyama N, Yokoyama T (2014) Estimation of permeability of sedimentary rocks by applying water-expulsion porosimetry to Katz and Thompson model. Eng Geol 177(14):75–82Google Scholar
  37. Pagliai M, Vignozzi N, Pellegrini S (2004) Soil structure and the effect of management practices. Soil Tillage Res 79:131–143Google Scholar
  38. Penumadu D, Dean J (2000) Compressibility effect in evaluating the pore-size distribution of kaolin clay using mercury intrusion porosimetry. Can Geotech J 37(37):393–405Google Scholar
  39. Philipp T, Amann-Hildenbrand A, Laurich B, Desbois G, Littke R, Urai JL (2017) The effect of microstructural heterogeneity on pore size distribution and permeability in Opalinus Clay (Mont Terri, Switzerland): insights from an integrated study of laboratory fluid flow and pore morphology from BIB-SEM images. Geol Soc London SP454.3:85–106Google Scholar
  40. Rahardjo H, Aung KK, Leong EC, Rezaur RB (2004) Characteristics of residual soils in Singapore as formed by weathering. Eng Geol 73(1):157–169Google Scholar
  41. Reverberi A, Ferraiolo G, Peloso A (1966) Determination by experiment of the distribution function of the cylindrical macropores and ink bottles in porous systems. Ann Chim 56(12):1552–1561Google Scholar
  42. Salmas C, Androutsopoulos G (2001) Mercury porosimetry: contact angle hysteresis of materials with controlled pore structure. J Colloid Interface Sci 239(1):178–189Google Scholar
  43. Scheidegger AE (1957) The physics of flow through porous media. University of Toronto Press, Toronto, pp 1–353Google Scholar
  44. Schlueter EM, Zimmerman RW, Witherspoon PA, Cook NGW (1997) The fractal dimension of pores in sedimentary rocks and its influence on permeability. Eng Geol 48(3):199–215Google Scholar
  45. Seven K, Germann P (1981) Water flow in soil macropores II. A combined flow model. Eur J Soil Sci 32(1):15–29Google Scholar
  46. Shi FG, Zhang CZ, Zhang JB, Zhang XN, Yao J (2017) The changing pore-size distribution of swelling and shrinking soil revealed by nuclear magnetic resonance relaxometry. J Soils Sediments 17(1):61–69Google Scholar
  47. Simms PH, Yanful EK (2001) Measurement and estimation of pore shrinkage and pore distribution in a clayey till during soil-water characteristic curve tests. Can Geotech J 38(4):741–754Google Scholar
  48. Smithwick RW, Fuller EL (1984) A generalized analysis of hysteresis in mercury porosimetry. Powder Technol 38(2):165–173Google Scholar
  49. Sugita T, Sato T, Hirabayashi S, Nagao J, Jin Y, Kiyono F, Ebinuma T, Narita H (2012) A pore-scale numerical simulation method for estimating the permeability of sand sediment. Transp Porous Med 94(1):1–17Google Scholar
  50. Tanaka H, Locat J (1999) A microstructure investigation of Osaka Bay clay: the impact of microfossils on its mechanical behavior. Can Geotech J 36:493–508Google Scholar
  51. Tanaka H, Shiwakoti DR, Omukai N, Rito F, Locat J, Tanaka M (2003) Pore-size distribution of clayey soils measured by mercury intrusion porosimetry and its relation to hydraulic conductivity. Soils Found 43(6):63–73Google Scholar
  52. Tang YQ, Yan JJ (2015) Effect of freeze–thaw on hydraulic conductivity and microstructure of soft soil in Shanghai area. Environ Earth Sci 73(11):7679–7690Google Scholar
  53. Tavenas F, Leblond P, Jean P, Leroueil S (1983) The permeability of natural soft clays. Part I: methods of laboratory measurement. Can Geotech J 20(4):629–644Google Scholar
  54. Theodoropoulou MA, Sygouni V, Karoutsos V, Tsakiroglou CD (2005) Relative permeability and capillary pressure functions of porous media as related to the displacement growth pattern. Int J Multiphase Flow 31(10–11):1155–1180Google Scholar
  55. Tsakiroglou CD, Ioannidis MA (2008) Dual-porosity modelling of the pore structure and transport properties of a contaminated soil. Eur J Soil Sci 59(4):744–761Google Scholar
  56. Tsakiroglou CD, Kolonis GB, Roumeliotis TC, Payatakes AC (1997) Mercury penetration and snap-off in lenticular pores. J Colloid Interface Sci 193(2):259–272Google Scholar
  57. Tsetsekou A, Androutsopoulos G, Mann R (2010) Mercury porosimetry hysteresis and entrapment predictions based on a corrugated random pore model. Chem Eng Commun 110(1):1–29Google Scholar
  58. Wall GC, Brown RJC (1981) The determination of pore-size distributions from sorption isotherms and mercury penetration in interconnected pores: the application of percolation theory. J Colloid Interface Sci 82(1):141–149Google Scholar
  59. Wild S, Arabi M, Rowlands GO (1987) Relation between pore-size distribution, permeability, and cementitious gel formation in cured clay–lime systems. Mater Sci Technol 3(12):1005–1011Google Scholar
  60. Zhou J, Tang YQ (2015) Deformation mechanism of soft clay surrounding subway tunnel after artificial ground freezing. Dissertation, Shanghai, Tongji University (in Chinese)Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Key Laboratory of Geotechnical and Underground Engineering of Ministry of EducationTongji UniversityShanghaiChina
  2. 2.Department of Geotechnical Engineering, College of Civil EngineeringTongji UniversityShanghaiChina

Personalised recommendations