Geotechnical and Geological Engineering

, Volume 25, Issue 6, pp 673–678 | Cite as

Design of Inclined Covers with Capillary Barrier Effect by S.-E. Parent and A. Cabral

  • B. BussièreEmail author
  • M. Aubertin
  • G. Zhan


The paper was read with interest by the discussers, who have been working on the behavior of cover systems for many years, analyzing their response under a variety of conditions using experimental, numerical, and in situ monitoring tools (e.g. Aubertin et al. 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, 2006; Bussière 1999; Bussière et al. 1995, 1998, 2000, 2002, 2003a, b; Zhan et al. 2001a, b, 2006). The Authors are attempting to develop an approach to design an optimal inclined “Covers with capillary barrier effect—CCBE” (a term coined by the discussers over 10 years ago) to limit water infiltration, based in part on the analytical solution proposed by Ross (1990). Their treatment of the topic has raised many questions, and some of the major concerns are presented below. More specifically, the following points are discussed herein: (i) the limitations of analytical solutions, (ii) the transient nature (and time-dependency) of the diversion capacity of inclined CCBEs, and (iii) the steps...


Hydraulic Conductivity Extreme Precipitation Relative Permeability Curve Heap Leach Parametric Numerical Study 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

References not cited by Parent and Cabral

  1. Aubertin M, Cifuentes E, Martin V, Apithy S, Bussière B, Molson J, Chapuis RP, et Maqsoud A (2006) An investigation of factors that influence the water diversion capacity of inclined covers with capillary barrier effects. In: Miller GA, Zapata CE, Houston SL, Fredlund DG (eds) Proceedings of the 4th international conference on unsaturated soils, UNSAT 2006, Carefree, Arizona, April 2–6. Geotechnical Special Publication No. 147, ASCE, GEO Institute, vol 2, pp 613–624Google Scholar
  2. Aubertin M, Bussière B, Aachib M, Chapuis RP (1996) Une modélisation numérique des écoulements non saturés dans des couvertures multicouches en sols. Hydrogéologie 1:3–13Google Scholar
  3. Aubertin M, Chapuis RP, Aachib M, Bussière B, Ricard J-F, Tremblay L (1995) Évaluation en laboratoire de barrières sèches construites à partir de résidus miniers, Mine Environment Neutral Drainage (MEND) report 2.22.2a. CANMET Secretariat, Ottawa, OntGoogle Scholar
  4. Aubertin M, Chapuis RP, Aachib M, Ricard J-F, Tremblay L, Bussière B (1994) Cover technology for acidic tailings: hydrogeological properties of milling wastes used as capillary barrier. In: Carrier WD (ed.) Proceedings of the 1st international congress on environmental geotechnic. ISSMFE-CGS, Edmonton, pp 427–432Google Scholar
  5. Brooks RH, Corey JC (1964) Hydraulic properties of porous medium. Colorado State University (Fort Collins), Hydrology Paper 3Google Scholar
  6. Bussière B (1999) Étude du comportement hydrique de couvertures avec effets de barrière capillaire inclinées à l’aide de modélisations physiques et numériques. Ph.D. Thesis, Mineral Engineering Department, École Polytechnique de Montréal, 354 ppGoogle Scholar
  7. Bussière B, Maqsoud A, Aubertin M, Martschuk J, Mcmullen J, Julien M (2006) Cover performance at the LTA site, Malartic, Quebec, Canada. CIM Bulletin, September/October, Paper 20 (available online only), pp 1–16Google Scholar
  8. Bussière B, Aubertin M, Chapuis RP (2003a) The behaviour of inclined covers used as oxygen barriers. Can Geotech J 40:512–535CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Bussière B, Apithy S, Aubertin M, Chapuis RP (2003b) Diversion capacity of sloping covers with capillary barrier effect. Proceedings of the 56th annual Canadian geotechnical conference, 4th Joint IAH-CNC and CGS groundwater specialty conference, and 2003 NAGS conference, Winnipeg, Canada, Session 10C [CD-ROM], 8 ppGoogle Scholar
  10. Bussière B, Aubertin M, Chapuis RP (2002) A laboratory set up to evaluate the hydraulic behavior of inclined capillary barriers. In: Philips R. Guo PJ, Popescu R (eds) Proceedings of the international conference on physical modelling in Geotechnics, St.Jonh’s, Newfoundland, 10–12 July. A.A. Balkema, Rotterdam, pp 391–396Google Scholar
  11. Bussière B, Aubertin M, Morel-Seytoux HJ, Chapuis RP (1998) A laboratory investigation of slope influence on the behaviour of capillary barriers. Proceedings of the 51th Canadian geotechnical conference, Edmonton, Canada, vol 2, pp 831–836Google Scholar
  12. Bussière B, Aubertin M, Aachib M, Chapuis RP, Crespo JR (1995) Unsaturated flow modelling of covers for reactive tailings. In: Mitri HS (ed) Proceedings of the 3rd Canadian conference on computer applications in the mining industry CAMI’95, Montreal, Canada, 22–25 October, pp 853–862Google Scholar
  13. Cifuentes E, Aubertin M, Chapuis RP, Molson J, Bussière B (2006) Analyses of the water diversion length of inclined, layered soil covers. Proceedings of the 59th Canadian geotechnical conference and the 7th joint CGS/IAH-CNC groundwater specialty conference, Sea to Sky Geotechnique, Vancouver, Canada, 1–4 October, pp 1744–1749Google Scholar
  14. Gardner WR (1958) Some steady state solutions of unsaturated moisture flow equations with application to evaporation from a water table. Soil Sci 85:228–232CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Kämpf M, Holfelder T, Montenegro H (2003) Identification and parameterization of flow processes in artificial in capillary barriers. Water Resour Res 39:SBH 2-1–SBH 2-9CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Morel-Seytoux HJ (1994) Steady-state effectiveness of a capillary barrier on a sloping interface. In: Morel-Seytoux HJ (ed) 14th Hydrology Days. Hydrology Days Publications, Atherton, CA, pp 335–346Google Scholar
  17. Morel-Seytoux HJ, Khanji J (1974) Derivation of an equation of infiltration. Water Resour Res 10(4):795–800Google Scholar
  18. Morel-Seytoux HJ, Meyer PD, Nachabe M, Touma J, Van Genughten MT, Lenhard RJ (1996) Parameter equivalence for the Brooks-Corey and van Genuchten soil characteristics: preserving the effective capillary drive. Water Resour Res 32:1251–1258CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Philip JR (1969) Theory of infiltration. Adv Hydrosci 5:215–296Google Scholar
  20. Ricard JF, Aubertin M, Firlotte FW, Knapp R, Mcmullen J (1997) Design and construction of a dry cover made of tailings for the closure of Les Terrains Aurifères site, Malalrtic, Québec, Canada. In: Proceedings of the 4th International Conference on Acid Rock Drainage (ICARD), Vancouver, Canada, 31 May–6 June, vol 4, pp 1515–1530Google Scholar
  21. Rijtema PE (1965) An analysis of actual evapotranspiration. Rep. 659, Cent. for Agri. Publ. and Doc., Wageningen, Netherlands, 107 pGoogle Scholar
  22. Steenhuis TS, Parlange J-Y, Kung K-JS (1991) Comment on “The diversion capacity of capillary barriers” by Benjamin Ross. Water Resour Res 27(8):2155–2156CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Stormont JC (1995) The effect of constant anisotropy on capillary barrier performance. Water Resour Res 31:783–785CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Stormont JC (1996) The effectiveness of two capillary barriers on a 10% slope. Geotech Geol Eng 14:243–267CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Warrick AW, Wierenga PJ, Pan L (1997) Downward water flow through sloping layers in the vadose zone: analytical solutions for diversions. J Hydrol 192:321–337CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Zhan G, Aubertin M, Mayer A, Burke K, McMullen J (2001a) Capillary cover design for leach pad closure. SME Trans 1:104–110Google Scholar
  27. Zhan G, Mayer A, McMullen J, Aubertin M (2001b) Slope effect study on the capillary cover design for a spent leach pad. Proceedings of the 8th international conference tailings and mine waste’01. Colorado State University, Forth Collins, Co, A.A. Balkema Rotterdam, The Netherlands, pp 179–187Google Scholar
  28. Zhan G, Schafer W, Milczarek M, Myers K, Giraudo J, Espell R (2006) The evolution of evapotranspiration cover system at Barrick Goldstrike Mines. Proceedings of the 7th international conference on acid rock drainage, ICARD 06, Society of Mining Engineering (SME), St. Louis, MO, March 26–30, pp 2585–2603Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Applied SciencesUniversité du Québec en Abitibi-Témiscamingue (UQAT)Rouyn-NorandaCanada
  2. 2.Department of Civil, Geological and Mining EngineeringÉcole Polytechnique de MontréalMontrealCanada
  3. 3.Barrick Gold CorporationSalt Lake CityUSA

Personalised recommendations