Network Modelling of Fluid Retention Behaviour in Unsaturated Soils

Athanasiadis, I., Wheeler, S. J. and Grassl, P. (2016) Network Modelling of Fluid Retention Behaviour in Unsaturated Soils. In: 3rd European Conference on Unsaturated Soils (E-UNSAT 2016), Paris, France, 12-14 Sept 2016, p. 11016. (doi: 10.1051/e3sconf/20160911016)

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The paper describes discrete modelling of the retention behaviour of unsaturated porous materials. A network approach is used within a statistical volume element (SVE), suitable for subsequent use in hydro-mechanical analysis and incorporation within multi-scale numerical modelling. The soil pore structure is modelled by a network of cylindrical pipes connecting spheres, with the spheres representing soil voids and the pipes representing inter-connecting throats. The locations of pipes and spheres are determined by a Voronoi tessellation of the domain. Original aspects of the modelling include a form of periodic boundary condition implementation applied for the first time to this type of network, a new pore volume scaling technique to provide more realistic modelling and a new procedure for initiating drying or wetting paths in a network model employing periodic boundary conditions. Model simulations, employing two linear cumulative probability distributions to represent the distributions of sphere and pipe radii, are presented for the retention behaviour reported from a mercury porosimetry test on a sandstone.

Item Type:Conference Proceedings
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Athanasiadis, Dr Ignatios and Grassl, Dr Peter and Wheeler, Professor Simon
Authors: Athanasiadis, I., Wheeler, S. J., and Grassl, P.
College/School:College of Science and Engineering > School of Engineering > Infrastructure and Environment
Journal Name:E3S Web of Conferences
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2016 The Authors
First Published:First published in E3S Web of Conferences 9(2016):110016
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons License
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Project CodeAward NoProject NamePrincipal InvestigatorFunder's NameFunder RefLead Dept
566601SAFE - a Systems Approach For Engineered BarriersPeter GrasslEngineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC)EP/I036427/1ENG - ENGINEERING INFRASTRUCTURE & ENVIR