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Research Article
Homomorphic Modelling of Shrinkage Properties of Soils of Southeastern Nigeria for Sustainable Land Use

E.U. Onweremadu and M.A.N. Anikwe

International Journal of Soil Science, 2007, 2(4), 286-293.

Abstract

Responsiveness of soils to volume change at all moisture statuses affect infrastructural development of soils. Volume Shrinkage (VS) was estimated from Coefficient of Linear Extensibility (COLE) values, using 150 soil samples from 30 soil profile pits in southeastern Nigeria. The objective of this study was to use soil properties related to shrinkage in predicting and monitoring volume changes in these soils in southeastern region of Nigeria. The value of liquid limit (26-30%) was higher than that of plastic limit (11-13%). Plasticity index was lower (16-17%) in the upper soil layer (0-40 cm) than in the lower horizons (41-80 cm layer) by 24%. Volume shrinkage value (11.20-11.80%) was least at the topmost horizon (0-40 cm depth) and increased to between 14-18% in the lower part of the profile (40-100 cm). Soils at all depths showed low to moderate shrink-swell properties having coefficient of linear extensibility of 0.036-0.057 cm cm-1 with middle layers showing higher shrink-swell characteristics. These results show moderate shrinkage (VS = 10-20) although intra-pedal variability was prominent. Multiple regression analysis showed good predictive ability (R2 = 0.76): p = l.05; n = 150) of Atterberg’s limits, texture, bulk density and organic matter (OM) in determining shrinkage properties. Accuracy of prediction was defined by a low Root Mean Square Error (RMSE) value of 0.01 while the model overestimated slightly (bias±0.00001).

ASCI-ID: 42-79

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