Title: Determination of soil parameters based on mathematical modelling of centrifugation

Authors: Jozef Kačur; Jozef Minár; Hana Budáčová

Addresses: Faculty of Mathematics, Physics and Informatics, Comenius University, Mlynská dolina, 842 48 Bratislava, Slovakia ' Faculty of Mathematics, Physics and Informatics, Comenius University, Mlynská dolina, 842 48 Bratislava, Slovakia ' Institute of Measurement Science, Slovak Academy of Sciences, Dúbravská cesta 9, 841 04 Bratislava Bratislava, Slovakia

Abstract: In the present paper, we investigate the infiltration of water into a partially saturated medium and the corresponding inverse problem. The soil parameters in the van Genuchten-Mualem empirical formula for capillary-pressure relation are determined. Only the global infiltration characteristics for a porous medium sample (in one dimension) are collected during centrifugation. An original and reliable centrifugal scenario is proposed, requiring non-invasive and inexpensive measurements of the centrifugal force and the amount of infiltrated and expelled water from the sample during centrifugation. Therefore, it is sufficient to measure only the time points when centrifugal force reaches prescribed values controlled on the counterbalancing arm. In a series of experiments, we simulate the solution of the inverse problem, demonstrating the applicability of the method.

Keywords: water infiltration; capillary pressure law identification; hydraulic permeability; centrifugation; Richards equation; interfaces; numerical method; mathematical modelling; partially saturated media; porous media; soil parameters; centrifugal force; simulation.

DOI: 10.1504/IJMMNO.2014.063265

International Journal of Mathematical Modelling and Numerical Optimisation, 2014 Vol.5 No.3, pp.153 - 170

Received: 21 Oct 2013
Accepted: 24 Jan 2014

Published online: 08 Jul 2014 *

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