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Channeling During Settling and Self-weight Consolidation of Cohesive Sediments
Canadian Geotechnical Journal (2008)
  • Soonkie Nam, Georgia Southern University
  • Marte Gutierrez, Colorado School of Mines
  • Panayiotis Diplas, Lehigh University
As a part of the settling and self-weight consolidation of fine-grained materials, a common but not widely recognized phenomenon randomly occurs, namely channeling or the formation of narrow vertical paths or “channels.” Channel formation can have important effects on the microstructure, consolidation, and shear strength characteristics of newly formed sediments. However, only a few studies have been performed on channeling. The causes of channel formation and the factors affecting it are still not fully understood. This paper presents the results of an experimental study of channel formation during settling and self-weight consolidation in fine-grained materials. Four types of fine-grained materials and different slurry concentrations were tested using large and small settling columns, and channel formation was observed using a high-resolution digital camera. The results indicate that the primary mechanism for channel formation is the coalescence of small-scale discontinuities between clusters of soil particles formed by flocculation. The stronger the degree of flocculation, the more prevalent is the formation of channels. Pore pressure measurements show the effects of channels in dissipating excess pore pressures in sediments undergoing self-weight consolidation.
  • Channeling,
  • Cohesive sediments,
  • Settling and self-weight consolidation
Publication Date
June, 2008
Citation Information
Soonkie Nam, Marte Gutierrez and Panayiotis Diplas. "Channeling During Settling and Self-weight Consolidation of Cohesive Sediments" Canadian Geotechnical Journal Vol. 45 Iss. 6 (2008) p. 867 - 876 ISSN: 1208-6010
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