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Soil Physics with PythonTransport in the Soil–Plant–Atmosphere System$
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Marco Bittelli, Gaylon S. Campbell, and Fausto Tomei

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780199683093

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: August 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199683093.001.0001

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Steady-State Water Flow and Hydraulic Conductivity

Steady-State Water Flow and Hydraulic Conductivity

(p.128) 6 Steady-State Water Flow and Hydraulic Conductivity
Soil Physics with Python

Marco Bittelli

Gaylon S. Campbell

Fausto Tomei

Oxford University Press

This chapter introduces the concepts behind the flow of water in soil and the forces that retard water flow. Steady-state water flow in saturated soils is presented and saturated hydraulic conductivity is described. Poiseuille’s law is derived and the theory behind water transport in soil is developed. The theoretical basis of the capillary bundle concept and porosity is described. Equations are presented to derive saturated hydraulic conductivity from soil texture data. The unsaturated hydraulic conductivity is derived from knowledge of the soil water retention curve and numerical code is presented to allow the reader to experiment with the features, and limitations, of the different parametric models available.

Keywords:   steady-state water flow, saturated hydraulic conductivity, unsaturated hydraulic conductivity, poiseuille’s law, capillary bundle, porosity

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