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Engr. Kelvin Michael A. Crystal
Department of Agricultural and Food Engineering
College of Engineering and Information Technology
Cavite State University
Indang, Cavite

• Infiltration - passage of water into the soil
• Percolation – movement of water through the
soil profile
• Infiltration rate – infiltration per unit time;
expressed in volume per unit time per unit
area or depth per unit time
• Hydraulic conductivity – velocity of flow
caused by a unit gradient; flow through soils
in any direction
• Permeability – used interchangeably with
hydraulic conductivity


the greater is the infiltration rate • surface sealing or puddling of soil – formation of a thin compact layer on the surface as a result of severe breakdown of soil structure caused by the beating action of raindrops and flow of water over the surface 2 . soil structure.7/7/2014 • • • • Water conservation Reduced soil erosion by runoff Irrigation (manner of application) Critical and maximum depth determination in water reservoir design 1. the larger the pore size and the greater the continuity of the pores. Soil – soil texture.

Use of soil additives – chemicals that improve the soil structure hence increase infiltration. has greater effect on infiltration than soil type and texture 3. Antecedent moisture condition – high antecedent moisture condition causes reduction in pore space and rate of water movement 4. other chemicals cause soil particles to swell and to become hydrophilic hence reduce infiltration 3 . Vegetation – reduces surface sealing.7/7/2014 2.

7/7/2014 Darcy equation (For one-dimensional flow of water through a saturated homogeneous soil) Q = k h A/L Where: Q = flow rate (L3/T) K = hydraulic conductivity (L/T) h = head or potential causing flow (L) A = cross-sectional area of flow (L2) L = length of the flow path (L) In case of heterogeneous soil (2 layers): L K = ------------------L1/K1 + L2/K2 4 .

recession rate of water level in inner cylinder is recorded.7/7/2014 Direct measurement – involves direct measurement of water applied and water flowing from the field 1. water levels in both cylinders are maintained equal. water is added to the cylinder and allowed to pond carefully so as not to puddle the soil. Double Ring Infiltrometer Method • Provides for a buffer pond to minimize the effect of radial flow • Cylinders are carefully driven into the soil to a depth of about 15 cm. Installation of cylinders Maintaining the water level in the cylinders 5 .

7/7/2014  Other Methods • Ponding • Furrows • Rainfall or sprinkler Note: Infiltration is computed by assuming it to equal the difference between water applied and measured surface runoff 6 .

7/7/2014  The infiltration capacity at the onset of infiltration is high. It then normally approaches a constant value which may be taken as the infiltration rate of the soil. the rate of water intake gradually decreases. 7 . S the soil pores fill with water as surface sealing takes place.

7/7/2014 Horton’s Equation f = fc + (fo – fc) e-kt Where: f = infiltration capacity or the maximum rate at which soil under a given can take water through its surface (L/T) fc = the constant infiltration capacity as t approaches infinity (L/T) fo = infiltration capacity at the onset of infiltration (L/T) k = a positive constant for a given soil and initial condition t = time (T) Sample Problem Assuming that the Horton infiltration is valid. determine the constant infiltration rate if fo = 50 mm/hr. What is the infiltration rate at 20 min? 8 .9. f at 10 min is 13 mm/hr. and k = 12.

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