Model Calculations for the Extraction of Soil Water by Ceramic Cups and Plates1
- R. R. van der Ploeg and
- F. Beese2
A numerical method is developed with which the flow of moisture towards suction units in soil can be evaluated. For a number of selected problems the unsaturated moisture flow equation is solved twice: (i) for radial flow towards a suction plate or suction cup; (ii) for vertical downwards flow under the same conditions, but without a suction unit in the soil. The calculations are performed for a flat soil without a plant cover. It is found that even for little vacuum, large differences may exist between the seepage rate as determined from a suction unit as compared to the seepage rate of the unextracted soil. It is also shown that the radius of influence of a suction unit, which extracts water continuously, can be several feet wide. It is concluded that in order to be reliable, data collected with suction units should be analyzed with care.Please view the pdf by using the Full Text (PDF) link under 'View' to the left.
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