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Analysis of pore space tortuosity and connectivity using CT scans of soil samples

Grant number: 14/05930-9
Support type:Scholarships abroad - Research Internship - Doctorate
Effective date (Start): September 01, 2014
Effective date (End): June 30, 2015
Field of knowledge:Agronomical Sciences - Agricultural Engineering - Soil and Water Engineering
Principal Investigator:Quirijn de Jong van Lier
Grantee:Lívia Previatello da Silva
Supervisor abroad: Hans-Jörg Vogel
Home Institution: Centro de Energia Nuclear na Agricultura (CENA). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). Piracicaba , SP, Brazil
Local de pesquisa : Helmholtz Association, Germany  
Associated to the scholarship:13/14669-0 - Analysis of models for the correlation between retention and conduction of water in unsaturated soil, BP.DR


Microtomography has been used in soil physics for characterization and allows non-destructive analysis with high-resolution, yielding a three-dimensional representation of pore space and fluid distribution. It also allows quantitative characterization of pore space, including pore size distribution, shape, connectivity, tortuosity and orientation. This research project aims to train the proponent to acquire computerized tomography (CT) soil images and to analyze the result for pore space tortuosity and connectivity. Using the Young-Laplace relation, obtained pore structure characterizations will be used to simulate the effect of water saturation on tortuosity and connectivity. Obtained parameters will be compared to the empirical parameters linked to tortuosity estimated from determined retention and hydraulic conductivity as proposed in the main PhD project of the proponent. (AU)