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Determination of water storage and permeability functions for oil sands tailings

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Title: Determination of water storage and permeability functions for oil sands tailings
Author: Fredlund, Delwyn G.; Stone, Jeff; Stianson, Jason; Sedgwick, Andrea
Issue Date: 2011-11
Publicly Available in cIRcle 2011-11-04
Series/Report no. Tailings and Mine Waste 2011: Vancouver, Canada
Abstract: The paper describes how soil-water characteristic curve, SWCC, tests can be conducted on high volume change materials and used in conjunction with an independently measured shrinkage curves to provide the required unsaturated soil property functions for numerical simulations of the drying process. The saturated-unsaturated soil property functions are used for modeling the drying of oil sands tailings. A laboratory test procedure was developed for the accurate measurement of the shrinkage behavior of oil sands tailings. A laboratory test procedure for measuring and interpreting the shrinkage curve results is also presented. A regression curve-fitting analysis was used to obtain a closed-form equation for the shrinkage curve. The shrinkage curve results are combined with the measured soil-water characteristic curve and used to identify the “true” air-entry value and residual conditions for the oil sands tailings. The meaning of various forms for the SWCC is described along with a designation of the correct interpretation that needs to be placed on the soil-water characteristic curve when determining both the permeability function and the water storage function. The saturated coefficient of permeability is combined with the SWCC to compute the hydraulic properties for the oil sands tailings. The paper concludes with a description of the manner in which each of the unsaturated soil properties can be used for the numerical simulation of drying oil sands tailings.[All papers were considered for technical and language appropriateness by the organizing committee.]
Affiliation: Non UBC
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/2429/38765
Peer Review Status: Unreviewed
Scholarly Level: Other

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