Structural characteristics and its influencing factors of typical loess

Abstract

The aim of this study was to analyze the influences of water content, calcium carbonate (CaCO3) content, and dry density on the structural characteristics of typical loess, using comprehensive structure potential (CSP) as the structural parameter. Oedometer testing was conducted on undisturbed, saturated, and disturbed loess samples under various conditions of water content, CaCO3 content, and dry density to obtain the deformation data. Based on the collected data, we calculated the CSP and analyzed the structural properties of the samples. The weight of each influencing factor was quantified using a variation coefficient method. To analyze the evolution mechanism of soil structural properties, we determined the microstructure of the samples by scanning electron microscopy studies and mercury intrusion porosimetry. The results showed that the CSP increased with decreasing water content, increasing CaCO3 content, and decreasing dry density. Water content had the greatest effect on the CSP, and CaCO3 content had the least effect. There were two kinds of changes in the structural properties of samples under different conditions: strengthening and weakening. Large pores exerted a significant influence on soil structural properties.

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Acknowledgements

This work was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Nos. 41472242 and 41602285), and Science and Technology Development Program of Jilin Province, China (No. 20180520064JH).

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Correspondence to Huie Chen.

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Chen, H., Jiang, Y., Gao, Y. et al. Structural characteristics and its influencing factors of typical loess. Bull Eng Geol Environ 78, 4893–4905 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10064-018-1431-2

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Keywords

  • Typical loess
  • Structural properties
  • Water content
  • CaCO3 content
  • Dry density
  • Microstructure