A new empirical model for estimating the hydraulic conductivity of low permeability media
- College of Hydrology and Water Resources, Hohai University, Nanjing, 210098, China
Keywords: Hydraulic conductivity, empirical model, grain-size analysis, fine medium
Abstract. Hydraulic conductivity (K) is one of the significant soil characteristics in terms of flow movement and solute transport. It has been recognized that K is statistically related to the grain-size distribution. Numerous models have been developed to reveal the relationship between K and the grain-size distribution of soil, but most of these are inappropriate for fine-grained media. Therefore, a new empirical model for estimating K of low permeability media was proposed in this study. In total, the values of K of 30 soil samples collected in the Jiangning District of Nanjing were measured using the single-ring infiltrometer method. The new model was developed using the percentages of sand, silt and clay-sized particles, and the first and the second rank moment of the grain-size through the moment method as predictor variables. Multivariate nonlinear regression analysis yielded a coefficient of determination (R2) of 0.75, indicating that this empirical model seems to provide a new approach for the indirect determination of hydraulic conductivity of low permeability media.