E3S Web Conf.
Volume 195, 20204th European Conference on Unsaturated Soils (E-UNSAT 2020)
|Number of page(s)||6|
|Section||Field Studies and Engineering Applications|
|Published online||16 October 2020|
Experimental and Numerical Investigation of the Drying of an Agricultural Soil
1 University of Liège, Gembloux Agro-Bio Tech, 5030 Gembloux, Belgium
2 University of Liège, Department ArGEnCo, Quartier POLYTECH 1, 4000 Liège, Belgium
3 University of Liège, Chemical Engineering, 4000 Liège, Belgium
* Corresponding author: Robert.Charlier@uliege.be
Due to climate change, soil desiccating became a serious concern in the agricultural area of Belgium. Knowing soil evaporation kinetic can help to elucidate and predict: the soil moisture regime, soil water retention and soil water content. Those parameters are vital for water use efficiency and sustainable agriculture. This research investigated the mechanism of soil evaporation using both laboratory experiment and numerical simulation. Soil samples (Luvisol) were collected from the agricultural field in Gembloux- Belgium, and tested in a small drying chamber. Sensors measured the chamber temperature and humidity, while digital camera monitored the soil surface throughout the experiment. HYPROP device recorded the water change, soil suction, and soil water retention curve. During three evaporation experiments, four periods were observed rather than three as commonly recorded in the theory of drying. The modelling considered thermo-hydro-mechanical framework for predicting the drying process of Luvisol. The model used the finite element code LAGAMINE created at the University of Liege. The software aims at assessing the mechanism of water transport between soil and atmosphere. The results of the simulation showed major domination of Darcean flow during desiccating, while some short vapour diffusion occurred only after the soil surface began to de-saturate.
© The Authors, published by EDP Sciences 2020
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License 4.0, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
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