The Impact of Microwave Drying on the Structure of Exemplary Soils—Insights Using X-ray Microtomography
2. Materials and Methods
2.1. Selected Soils and Their Preparation
2.2. Procedure of Soil Drying by Air, Oven, and Microwave
2.3. X-ray Computed Microtomography
3. Results and Discussion
- Silty clay, as a cohesive soil, is significantly more sensitive to drying processes than the non-cohesive sand sample. The results obtained in this research showed severe fracturing of silty clay for MO-dried samples. In the case of sandy material, MO drying was successfully applied. The grains of the samples with relatively low water content used in the study did not crack. Thus, the heating type (CO or MO) is not interchangeable in the presented case of the selected cohesive soil. Further studies with different water contents combined with XµCT analyses are recommended.
- Uncritical use of MO drying in laboratories (due to the significant reduction in drying time) may result in incorrectly determining the mechanical and filtration parameters of the soils. The impact of microwaves on the soil during the study of basic physical properties, and then using the same soil for testing shear strength or water permeability, can cause a change in these characteristics. In the case of their reduction, they are underestimated, and in the case of their increase, they are overestimated. As a result, this may cause additional costs associated with the desire to unnecessarily improve their specific characteristics, or there may be a risk of construction failure.
- The drying method had a considerable effect on the porosity of the treated samples. After CO drying, the porosity was 28% lower than after air drying. In MO drying, porosity was even 40% lower than after air drying. This is related to the soil skeleton response to rapidly evaporating water.
Institutional Review Board Statement
Informed Consent Statement
Data Availability Statement
Conflicts of Interest
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|Coefficient of uniformity||Cu||-||2.40|
|Coefficient of curvature||Cc||-||1.20|
|Coefficient of uniformity||Cu||-||73|
|Coefficient of curvature||Cc||-||1.25|
|Soil Type||Water Content (%) by|
|Air Drying||Drying in a Conventional Oven||Drying in a Microwave|
|Quartz medium sand||3.1||3.5||3.0|
|Silty clay (mainly consisting of kaolinite)||21.7||23.3||22.6|
|Soil||Parameter||Type of Drying|
|Average pore diameter (µm)||95.2||98.5||92.3|
|Centroid path tortuosity||1.42||1.67||1.85|
|Silty clay||Porosity (%)||2.50||2.00||14.70|
|Average pore diameter (µm)||120.3||111.2||106.3|
|Centroid path tortuosity||8.25||8.92||2.70|
|Parameter||Symbol||Unit||Soil Air Dried||Soil Dried in a Conventional Oven (CO)||Soil Dried in a Microwave Oven (MO)|
|Coefficient of uniformity||Cu||-||1.68||2.40||2.29|
|Coefficient of curvature||Cc||-||1.04||1.20||1.15|
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Kaczmarek, Ł.; Jastrzębska, M.; Wejrzanowski, T. The Impact of Microwave Drying on the Structure of Exemplary Soils—Insights Using X-ray Microtomography. Materials 2022, 15, 5891. https://doi.org/10.3390/ma15175891
Kaczmarek Ł, Jastrzębska M, Wejrzanowski T. The Impact of Microwave Drying on the Structure of Exemplary Soils—Insights Using X-ray Microtomography. Materials. 2022; 15(17):5891. https://doi.org/10.3390/ma15175891Chicago/Turabian Style
Kaczmarek, Łukasz, Małgorzata Jastrzębska, and Tomasz Wejrzanowski. 2022. "The Impact of Microwave Drying on the Structure of Exemplary Soils—Insights Using X-ray Microtomography" Materials 15, no. 17: 5891. https://doi.org/10.3390/ma15175891