Soil Permeability Testing Equipment
Soil permeability testing equipment from Karol-Warner includes a wide range of permeameters for testing all soil types. Our line of soil permeability testing equipment produces accurate, repeatable results and meets requirements of many ASTM and AASHTO test methods.
Soil permeability, sometimes called hydraulic conductivity, is a measure of water flow through interconnected voids in a soil matrix. In geotechnical design, this property allows accurate calculations in areas such as drainage, earthen dam design, and slope stability. Environmental applications include groundwater contamination studies and evaluation of impermeable liners and barriers. Permeability specimens may be prepared directly from undisturbed field samples or by remolding or compacting soil materials in the laboratory. Some tests have provisions for either method. Use of soil permeability values for different applications and soil types has resulted in a number of different methods and equipment variations for testing, but all share the principles of Darcy’s Law, an equation describing the movement of fluid through a porous medium.
- Flexible Wall Permeability allows soil permeability characteristics to be studied when pressure and flow properties are carefully controlled. This test is often used on fine-grained cohesive soils in environmental applications. Specimens encased in latex membranes are tested in fluid-filled pressurized chambers following ASTM D5084 test methods.
- ASTM / AASHTO Constant Head Permeameters determine permeability of granular soils by the constant head method described in ASTM D2434 and AASHTO T 215. The permeameters have anodized aluminum end caps with clear acrylic chambers and are available in sizes from 2.5 to 9in (63.5 to 228.6mm) diameter.
- Constant / Falling Head Permeability Test Sets contain the components needed to determine permeability of flow through granular soils. The sets come with size-specific products that include a permeameter, Single-Tube Manometer with Constant Head Reservoir, and Porous Stones or Perforated Plates based on permeameter size.
- Shelby Tube Permeameters save significant sample preparation time and difficulty, avoiding damage to sensitive specimens by testing directly in undisturbed sampling (Shelby) tubes. Apparatus is available for 2, 2.5 or 3in (50.8, 63.5 or 76.2mm) diameter tubes and includes top and bottom assemblies with valves, tie rods, Porous Stones, and O-Rings for samples up to 6in (152.4mm) long.
- Compaction Permeameters allow efficient testing of remolded soil samples directly in standard 4 or 6in (102 or 152mm) compaction (Proctor) molds. Considerable preparation time is saved and either constant head or falling head methods can be used. The units include an aluminum base and top as well as the steel mold and collar. Shutoff valves at the base and top are standard, as is an air bleed valve on the top. The necessary tubing, Porous Stones, and sealing rings are also provided.
- Double-Ring Permeameters meet requirements of ASTM D5856 for testing compacted soils in standard 4in (102mm) compaction (Proctor) molds. Compaction molds with soil are mounted on a special double-ring permeameter base with a stainless steel ring that divides the sample into two equal portions. Water is introduced through the top plate assembly and permeant flow through both the center and the perimeter of the sample is measured with two pipettes connected to the lower control valves. Apparatus is available with or without the 4in compaction mold included.
- Miniature Permeameter is a compact, multipurpose unit used to conduct constant and falling head permeability tests on both cohesive and non-cohesive soils. The device includes a Single-Tube Manometer with Constant-Head Reservoir, screens, Porous Stones, tubing, and connections.
- Soil / Geotextile Permeameter has three acrylic chambers and uses the ASTM D5101 gradient ratio method for determination of permeability and clogging characteristics of geotextiles with soil. The Six Manometer Panel and Manometer Control Panel are required for use with the Soil / Geotextile Permeameters to ensure ASTM D5101 compliance.
- Double-Ring Infiltrometer measures in-place water infiltration into fine-grained soils according to ASTM D3385. Field studies are useful for environmental applications, drainage, irrigation requirements, and leakage from earthen containment structures. Stainless steel rings 12 and 24in (305 and 610mm) diameter and 20in (508mm) high are driven into the soil concentrically. Special Mariotte constant-head cylinders maintain water levels within the rings and measure infiltration rate. The set includes the two stainless steel rings, a 0.5in (12.7mm) thick alloy aluminum driving cap that also serves as a cover, 3,000 and 10,000ml graduated plastic Mariotte cylinders with support stand, and rubber splash guards.
- Pinhole Dispersion Apparatus simulates water flow along a crack in a soil sample to detect dispersive characteristics of the soil. The test results can be used in evaluating the stability of soils used in construction projects, thereby identifying potential safety issues.