Research Output

Volumetric consequences of particle loss by grading entropy

  Chemical and biological processes, such as dissolution in gypsiferous sands and biodegradation in waste refuse, result in mass or particle loss, which in turn lead to changes in solid and void phase volumes and grading. Data on phase volume and grading changes have been obtained from oedometric dissolution tests on sand–salt mixtures. Phase volume changes are defined by a (dissolution-induced) void volume change parameter (Λ). Grading changes are interpreted using grading entropy coordinates, which allow a grading curve to be depicted as a single data point and changes in grading as a vector quantity rather than a family of distribution curves. By combining Λ contours with pre- to post-dissolution grading entropy coordinate paths, an innovative interpretation of the volumetric consequences of particle loss is obtained. Paths associated with small soluble particles, the loss of which triggers relatively little settlement but large increase in void ratio, track parallel to the Λ contours. Paths associated with the loss of larger particles, which can destabilise the sand skeleton, tend to track across the Λ contours.

  • Type:


  • Date:

    01 March 2013

  • Publication Status:


  • Publisher

    Thomas Telford

  • DOI:


  • Cross Ref:


  • ISSN:


  • Library of Congress:

    TA Engineering (General). Civil engineering (General)

  • Dewey Decimal Classification:

    624 Civil engineering


McDougall, J., Imre, E., Barreto, D., & Kelly, D. (2013). Volumetric consequences of particle loss by grading entropy. Géotechnique, 63(3), (262-266). doi:10.1680/geot.sip13.t.002. ISSN 0016-8505



laboratory tests; settlement; fabric/structure of soils; constitutive relations; soil classification; particle-scale behaviour;

Monthly Views:

Available Documents