Geotechnical properties of Aquabeads

Magued Iskander, Kazunori Tabe

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


This chapter presents the geotechnical properties of a water-based transparent synthetic polymer, named Aquabeads, suitable for modeling some natural soils. A comprehensive study of the geotechnical properties of Aquabeads including permeability, compressibility, and yield stress was performed in order to understand its modeling capabilities. Aquabeads is suitable for representing soils with hydraulic conductivities in the 10-2 to 10-5 cm/sec range. The strength and compressibility are suitable for representing very weak sediments. Aquabeads has a number of advantages over available transparent synthetic soils for modeling flow. First, it is water based. Second, it possesses similar hydraulic characteristics to natural soils. Third, it is compatible with water, oil, selected surfactants, and alcohols used for modeling multiphase flow. Finally, it does not suffer from transparency degradation in large-scale models. These advantages make Aquabeads a practical alternative for simulating flow in educational settings including undergraduate labs and demonstrations in high schools.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationModelling with Transparent soils
PublisherSpringer Verlag
Number of pages19
ISBN (Print)9783642025006
StatePublished - 2010

Publication series

NameSpringer Series in Geomechanics and Geoengineering
ISSN (Print)1866-8755
ISSN (Electronic)1866-8763

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geotechnical Engineering and Engineering Geology
  • Mechanics of Materials


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