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Characterization of Dual-structure Pore-size Distribution of Soil

Authors Li, X.
Zhang, L.M. View this author's profile
Issue Date 2009
Source Canadian Geotechnical Journal , v. 46(2), pp. 129-141
Summary The microporosity structure of soil provides important information in understanding the shear strength, compressibility, water-retention ability, and hydraulic conductivity of soils. It is a soil characteristic that depends on sample preparation method and wetting-drying history. A comprehensive study of the microporosity structure of a lean clay with sand was conducted in this research to investigate variations of the microporosity structure during compaction, saturation, and drying processes. Scanning electron microscopy was used to observe the microporosity structure of soil sample surfaces. Mercury intrusion porosimetry was used to measure the microporosity structure quantitatively by showing the relationship between cumulative pore volumes and pore radius. The experimental results show that a dual-porosity structure (i.e., inter-aggregate pores and intra-aggregate pores) forms during the compaction process. The interaggregate pores are compressible and the associated volume is closely related to the final void ratio of the compacted sample. Changes to interaggregate pores is dominant during compaction, but changes to intra-aggregate pores is dominant during saturation and drying. Based on the experimental results, a dual-porosity structure model was developed by relating the pore-size distribution to the void ratio. Consequently, the pore-size distribution at any void ratio can be predicted.
ISSN 0008-3674
Rights Copyright © 2009 NRC Research Press,
Language English
Format Article
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