A Generalized Solution to Infiltration from Single-Ring Infiltrometers by Scaling
- L. Wu and
- L. Pan
Water infiltration into soil from a ring infiltrometer is an important issue for many scientific and engineering problems. Due to the complexity of the three-dimensional water flow, no generalized solutions are available to describe the infiltration process from a finite ponding source. This study applied a scaling technique to three-dimensional axisymmetric infiltration from a single-ring infiltrometer to obtain a generalized infiltration solution and evaluated the effects of soil conditions and ring geometry on the scaled infiltration curves. A numerical model based on Richards' equation in the cylindrical coordinates was developed to simulate infiltration processes for three representative soils. By properly choosing length- and time-scale factors, the infiltration curves of the three test soils representing different hydraulic properties were successfully scaled to essentially a single dimensionless infiltration curve. Tests showed that the dimensionless infiltration curve was not very sensitive to applied ponding head, ring diameter, ring insertion depth, and initial soil conditions. Finally a dimensionless infiltration equation in the form of i* = a + blt*0.5 was developed. The example showed that the generalized infiltration equation can predict the infiltration curve simulated by Richards' equation very well.Please view the pdf by using the Full Text (PDF) link under 'View' to the left.
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