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Improved apparatus for measuring hydraulic conductivity at low water content

January 1, 1992

A modification of the steady-state centrifuge method (SSCM) for unsaturated hydraulic conductivity (K) measurement improves the range and adjustability of this method. The modified apparatus allows mechanical adjustments to vary the measured K by a factor of 360. In addition, the use of different flow-regulating ceramic materials can give a total K range covering about six orders of magnitude. The increment of K adjustment is a factor of about 1.6. This makes it potentially useful for measuring targeted values of K or, through a trial and error procedure, of water content (θ). The range extension afforded by this modification has led to the lowest steady-state K measurement to date: 1.1 × 10−11 m/s at θ of 0.068 m3water/m3 for a sandy soil of the Delhi series (mixed, thermic Typic Xeropsamment).

Citation Information

Publication Year 1992
Title Improved apparatus for measuring hydraulic conductivity at low water content
DOI 10.2136/sssaj1992.03615995005600060017x
Authors J. R. Nimmo, K.C. Akstin, K.A. Mello
Publication Type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Series Title Soil Science Society of America Journal
Series Number
Index ID 70016910
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Toxic Substances Hydrology Program

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