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Agricultural engineers often draw upon lh~ classical theories of soil mechanics in their study of agricultural soil behaviour. These theories arc largely based on the assumption 1l1al the soil is saturated. In :In emerging theoretical framework. all Ullsaturated soil is considered 10 have four phases: solid. air. water. and contractile skin (the air-walcr interphase). The contractile skin acts like a rubbcr membrane as it induces a matric suction in thc soil pores. Suction has been shown to affect both strength and volullle change characteristics of unsalllrated soils. The relationship bctween water contcnt and matric suction (the soil-water charactcristic) becomcs an important componcnt of the unsaturated soil mcchanics framcwork. In lhis paper. concepts and implications of thes~ developments for some agricultural shear strength-based models arc discussed. Experimcntal data highlighting these relationships are also presented.
D. Wulfsohn. B.A. Adams and D.G. fredlund 1996. APPLICATION OF UNSAT RATED SOIL MECHANICS FOR AGRICULTURAL CONDITIONS. Canadian Agricultural Engineering 38(3):173-181.
Canadian Society for Bioengineering