Evaporation theory for deformable soils

In Mo Lee, Hyung Joo Lee, Jeong Yeon Cheon, Lakshmi N. Reddi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


Desiccation of a deformable soil is basically the removal of water by evaporation, which is controlled by evaporativity and evaporability. Surface evaporation improves the trafficability, which is essential for the access of construction equipment in areas reclaimed with soft clay. The existing traditional methods for evaluating evaporation cannot account for the deformation of soils during evaporation. Therefore, a theoretical model for predicting the rate of evaporation from the surface of a deformable material is proposed. The model is based on a system of equations for coupled heat and mass transfer in unsaturated soils. The modified pressure plate extractor test and glass desiccator test were carried out to obtain the soil-water characteristic curve for a deformable soil. A column-drying test was conducted to investigate one-dimensional water flow, heat flow, and evaporation in the surface. A finite difference program was developed to solve the coupled nonlinear partial differential equations, which permits the study of liquid, diffusive vapor, and heat flows in the deformable soil. Comparison between measured and simulated values shows good agreement.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1020-1027
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Geotechnical and Geoenvironmental Engineering
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 2003 Nov


  • Clays
  • Columns
  • Dewatering
  • Evaporation
  • Numerical analysis
  • Soil deformation
  • Unsaturated soils

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Science(all)
  • Geotechnical Engineering and Engineering Geology


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