With reference to a more compacted and less conductive upper soil layer overlying a less compacted and more conductive subsoil, a simple three-dimensional (3D) infiltration run is expected to yield more representative results of the upper layer than the subsoil. However, there is the need to quantitatively establish what is meant by more representativeness. At this aim, numerically simulated infiltration was investigated for a theoretically unconfined process under a null ponded head of water (d0H0 setup, with d = depth of ring insertion and H = ponded depth of water) and a practical Beerkan run (d1H1 setup, d = H = 1 cm). The considered layered soils differed by both the layering degree (from weak to strong; subsoil more conductive than the upper soil layer by 2.3–32.4 times, depending on the layering degree) and the thickness of the upper soil layer (0.5–3 cm). It was confirmed that water infiltration should be expected to be more representative of the upper soil layer when this layer is the less permeable since, for a 2-h experiment, the instantaneous infiltration rates for the layered soil were 1.0–2.1 times greater than those of the homogeneous low-permeable soil and 1.3–20.7 smaller than those of the homogeneous coarser soil that constituted the subsoil. Similarity with the homogeneous fine soil increased as expected as the upper layer became thicker. For a weak layering condition, the layered soil yielded an intermediate infiltration as compared with that of the two homogeneous soils forming the layered system. For a strong layering degree, the layered soil was more similar to the homogeneous fine soil than to the homogeneous coarse soil. Using the practical setup instead of the theoretical one should have a small to moderate effect on the instantaneous infiltration rates since all the calculated percentage differences between the d1H1 and d0H0 setups fell into the relatively narrow range of −18.8% to +17.4%. A sequential analysis procedure appeared usable to detect layering conditions but with some modifications as compared with the originally proposed procedure. The practical setup enhanced the possibility to recognize the time at which the characteristics of the subsoil start to influence the infiltration process. In conclusion, this investigation contributed to better interpret both the theoretical and the practically established 3D infiltration process in a soil composed of a less conductive upper soil layer overlying a more conductive subsoil and it also demonstrated that modifying the recently proposed sequential analysis procedure only using infiltration data could be advisable to determine the time when layering starts to influence the process.

Bagarello V., Iovino M., Lai J. (2023). A numerical test of soil layering effects on theoretical and practical Beerkan infiltration runs. VADOSE ZONE JOURNAL, 22(6), 270-286 [10.1002/vzj2.20283].

A numerical test of soil layering effects on theoretical and practical Beerkan infiltration runs

Bagarello V.
Primo
;
Iovino M.;Lai J.
Ultimo
2023-11-01

Abstract

With reference to a more compacted and less conductive upper soil layer overlying a less compacted and more conductive subsoil, a simple three-dimensional (3D) infiltration run is expected to yield more representative results of the upper layer than the subsoil. However, there is the need to quantitatively establish what is meant by more representativeness. At this aim, numerically simulated infiltration was investigated for a theoretically unconfined process under a null ponded head of water (d0H0 setup, with d = depth of ring insertion and H = ponded depth of water) and a practical Beerkan run (d1H1 setup, d = H = 1 cm). The considered layered soils differed by both the layering degree (from weak to strong; subsoil more conductive than the upper soil layer by 2.3–32.4 times, depending on the layering degree) and the thickness of the upper soil layer (0.5–3 cm). It was confirmed that water infiltration should be expected to be more representative of the upper soil layer when this layer is the less permeable since, for a 2-h experiment, the instantaneous infiltration rates for the layered soil were 1.0–2.1 times greater than those of the homogeneous low-permeable soil and 1.3–20.7 smaller than those of the homogeneous coarser soil that constituted the subsoil. Similarity with the homogeneous fine soil increased as expected as the upper layer became thicker. For a weak layering condition, the layered soil yielded an intermediate infiltration as compared with that of the two homogeneous soils forming the layered system. For a strong layering degree, the layered soil was more similar to the homogeneous fine soil than to the homogeneous coarse soil. Using the practical setup instead of the theoretical one should have a small to moderate effect on the instantaneous infiltration rates since all the calculated percentage differences between the d1H1 and d0H0 setups fell into the relatively narrow range of −18.8% to +17.4%. A sequential analysis procedure appeared usable to detect layering conditions but with some modifications as compared with the originally proposed procedure. The practical setup enhanced the possibility to recognize the time at which the characteristics of the subsoil start to influence the infiltration process. In conclusion, this investigation contributed to better interpret both the theoretical and the practically established 3D infiltration process in a soil composed of a less conductive upper soil layer overlying a more conductive subsoil and it also demonstrated that modifying the recently proposed sequential analysis procedure only using infiltration data could be advisable to determine the time when layering starts to influence the process.
nov-2023
Settore AGR/08 - Idraulica Agraria E Sistemazioni Idraulico-Forestali
Bagarello V., Iovino M., Lai J. (2023). A numerical test of soil layering effects on theoretical and practical Beerkan infiltration runs. VADOSE ZONE JOURNAL, 22(6), 270-286 [10.1002/vzj2.20283].
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/10447/619242
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