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Slumping of cultivated sandy soils : factors, processes and indicators

Abstract : The sandy soil can serve as a potential reserve for cultivation. However, they are often considered as marginal because prone to have low productivity and problems of structure degradation. One of the degradations is compaction caused by rainfall or irrigation, which is called slumping. Our objective is to identify the processes and factors that affect slumping. The study had been done under natural conditions (field) and simulated conditions (laboratory) respectively. In the field, a tropical sandy soil in Thailand was selected. After 20 cm and 40 cm depth tillage, the dynamic of hydraulic and physical characteristics were measured. In laboratory, a cultivated soil model was build in a cylinder (height and diameter was 20 cm). We used two materials: 1) the original soil from the experiment field site, and 2) the sand fraction (> 50 μm) extracted from this soil. These model soils were submitted to rainfalls with different intensity (20 to 120 mm h-1), combined with different suction (20 to 90 hPa) on a suction table which can support the cylinder. The slumping for soil happens when two conditions were met: 1) the water potential reached a threshold value near 0 hPa. In this value, the soil cohesion decreased and a fragile equilibrium conditions were reached according to granular material theory; 2) the potential value was kept long enough and the cohesion continue decrease until they can no more support the equilibrium, so slumping happens. Surprisingly, in our treatment, when the fine particles (<50 μm) were taken out from the soil, no slumping was observed. This demonstrates the particles of clay and silt are very important to soil stability, even their content were very low as less than 10 percent. The possible ways to prevent slumping and management of sandy soils are also discussed.
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Submitted on : Saturday, June 6, 2020 - 10:36:38 PM
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  • HAL Id : tel-02824449, version 1
  • PRODINRA : 43928

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Hongtao Hao. Slumping of cultivated sandy soils : factors, processes and indicators. Life Sciences [q-bio]. Université d'Orléans, 2010. English. ⟨tel-02824449⟩

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