Estimating Soil Permeability Rates

by Merlin E. Horn, Soil Sci.; Land Resources Div., Harza Engrg. Co., Chicago, IL,

Serial Information: Journal of the Irrigation and Drainage Division, 1971, Vol. 97, Issue 2, Pg. 263-274

Document Type: Journal Paper


A guide for estimating soil permeability rates was developed based on mean soil particle diameters that takes into account the wide ranges within commonly used soil textural classes and the influences of soil chemical properties, clay mineralogy, and other nonparticle size related factors affecting soil permeability. Curves platted on a log-log graph of soil texture versus permeability establish graphically the general limits of permeability rates for natural soils. Considerations in selecting working curves that relate soil texture and permeability rates for local conditions are also discussed. Estimating permeability rates in necessary in planning and designing irrigation and drainage systems where obtaining actual field measurements is difficult and impractical, or the data available are scant and misleading.

Subject Headings: Permeability (soil) | Permeability (material) | Clays | Chemical properties | Curvature | Irrigation systems | Drainage systems | Particle size distribution

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