William J. Likos, Ph.D., M.ASCE, and Rani Jaafar are the recipients of the Norman Medal for authoring the paper “Pore-Scale Model for Water Retention and Fluid Partitioning of Partially Saturated Granular Soil,” published in the May 2013 issue of ASCE’s Journal of Geotechnical and Geoenvironmental Engineering. Authors Likos and Jaafar present a first step in advancing the understanding of how pore water in its different connections to the soil particles can be modeled (as opposed to a bulk saturation level). This work represents a significant advance in the understanding and modeling of soil moisture. Unsaturated soil mechanics is a very important challenging area in geotechnical engineering research, and even though the soil-water characteristic curve (SWCC) quantifies the relationship between capillary pressure and water contents, it can be obtained only by time-consuming laboratory tests. This paper provides a new micromechanical framework to quantify the fluidic flow of unsaturated soil from conventional macroscaled measurement. Also, this model should be well applicable to other unsaturated soil mechanics.
Likos and Jaafar are Awarded ASCE’s Norman Medal
May 22, 2014