Effect of antecedent rainfall on pore-water pressure distribution characteristics in residual soil slopes under tropical rainfall
Leong, Eng Choon
Rezaur, R. B.
Date of Issue2007
School of Civil and Environmental Engineering
Characteristics of changes in pore-water pressure distribution are the main parameters associated with slope stability analysis involving unsaturated soils, which are directly affected by the flux boundary conditions (rainfall infiltration, evaporation and evapo-transpiration) at the soil–atmosphere interface. Four slopes were instrumented in two major geological formations in Singapore to provide real-time measurements of pore-water pressures and rainfall events on the slopes. The field monitoring results were analysed to characterize pore-water pressure distributions under various meteorological conditions and to study the effect of antecedent rainfall on pore-water pressure distributions in typical residual soil slopes under tropical climate. Slope stability analyses were also conducted for the best and worst pore-water pressure distributions recorded in each slope to determine the range of factor of safety for the slopes. Results indicate that, antecedent rainfall, initial pore-water pressures prior to a significant rainfall event as well as the magnitude of the rainfall event play a crucial role in the development of the worst pore-water pressure condition in a slope. The role of antecedent rainfall in the development of the worst pore-water pressure condition was found to be more significant in residual soils with low permeability as compared with that in residual soils with high permeability. Pore-water pressure variation due to rainfall was found to take place over a wide range in residual soils with higher permeability as compared to residual soils with lower permeability. The worst pore-water pressure profiles occurred when the total rainfall including the 5-day antecedent rainfall (in most cases) reached a maximum value during a wet period. The factor of safety of residual soils with low permeability was found to be unaffected by the worst pore-water pressure condition.
© 2007 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.