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This article in SSSAJ

  1. Vol. 68 No. 2, p. 359-370
    Received: Nov 23, 2002

    * Corresponding author(s): erik.braudeau@ird.fr
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Characterizing Nonrigid Aggregated Soil–Water Medium Using its Shrinkage Curve

  1. Erik Braudeau *a,
  2. Jean-Pierre Frangib and
  3. Rabi H. Mohtarc
  1. a Institut de Recherche pour le Développement (IRD), Centre de Montpellier, 911 av. Agropolis, BP64501, 34094 Montpellier, France
    b Laboratoire Environnement et Développement (LED), Université Paris VII, 2 place Jussieu, BP7071, 75251 Paris Cedex 5, France
    c Agricultural and Biological Engineering Dep., Purdue Univ., West Lafayette, IN 47906, USA


The properties of the soil–water medium are presented in the literature independent of its internal organization and operation. The objective of this study is to develop and test a conceptual model that used a continuously measured shrinkage curve (SC) to describe the functional organization of the soil–water medium. In this model, two functional porosities (micro and macro) are delineated and quantified by the SC. In addition, the equilibrium for four functional water pools is represented and parameterized by the SC. A set of eleven parameters was found necessary to model the seven phases of the SC and to describe the corresponding soil hydrostructural changes. A method to accurately obtain the parameters of this model by a specific analysis of the continuously measured SC is demonstrated. Examples of continuously measured and modeled SCs according to the pedostructure model (PS) are presented and discussed.

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