Reliability of HCT-based Soil Water Retention Curves

Meghdad Bagheri, Vasileios Matziaris, Damilola Akinniyi

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The measurement of SWRCs using HCTs has been the subject of several recent studies. Consequently, there have been several design and experimental procedures developed. However, despite these developments, the accuracy, range and duration of HCT-based measurement is still largely characterized by uncertainties and inconsistencies, thereby, reducing the reliability of the obtained SWRCs. In this work, an experimental program is designed to address these uncertainties. SWRCs of reconstituted London clay were measured using the continuous drying method with evaporation rate control. The obtained SWRCs were analysed based on the maximum suction value recorded by HCTs (smax), the obtained air-entry value (saev), the suction at inflection point (si), the water content at inflection point (wi), and the slope of tangent to inflection point (mi). A percentage uncertainty of ±4% was obtained for the saev and si values. Similarly, percentage uncertainties of ±6% and ±0.5% were obtained respectively for the mi and wi values. These results were further compared with parametric analysis of the reported SWRCs of the same soil in the literature. Given the observed tolerance ranges, cautions must be taken in selecting values for these parameters e.g. as input values in mathematical curve fitting equations for prediction of the entire SWRC, or in unsaturated constitutive modelling, to enhance reliability of the outputs.

Original languageEnglish
Article number25004
Number of pages5
JournalE3S Web of Conferences
Publication statusPublished - 24 Apr 2023
Event8th International Conference on Unsaturated Soils, UNSAT 2023 - Milos, Greece
Duration: 2 May 20235 May 2023

Bibliographical note

This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License 4.0, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Science(all)
  • Energy(all)
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)


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