J.Monnet, D. Mahmutovic, L. Boutonnier, S. Taibi, N.L; Hoang (2016) A theoretical retention model for non-saturated uniform and graded soils
Modelling the relation between the degree of saturation and the suction (ie retention curve) is an important challenge for geotechnical engineering. It has a huge influence on the behavior of large soil constructions as levees, embankments, road earthworks. We present here a theoretical model of retention curve which considers physical relations of non-saturated soils. With this approach, there is no need to assume particular shapes of the retention curves, which are a consequence of the physical assumptions. The present study is focused on a theoretical
model based on elastic sherical particle arrangement. As a first step a uniform model is presented with a single diameter of soil particle. A second step extends the use of the model to graded soils. The model uses only 5 physical parameters. It is compared with the experimental retention curve of two different samples of glass uniform particles and two different graded soils, a graded glass sample and the Livet-Gavet loam. It shows its ability to model the experimental curves and a better agreement than the former theory of Brooks and Corey (1966). This current publication is funded by the French National Project « Terredurable» (ANR 2011).