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A series of slaking tests was conducted to identify those conditions under which dispersion is the dominant mechanism of clay slaking. Variables investigated were clay mineralogy, adsorbed cation ratios (sodium/calcium), consolidation fluid electrolyte concentration, water content, and slaking fluid electrolyte concentration.
All clays with sodium ions occupying more than 10 percent of the exchange complex exhibited a dispersion slaking regardless of other conditions, provided the electrolyte concentration of the slaking fluid was lower than 10−3 N.
Observed slaking behavior can be classified into four modes: (a) swelling slaking, (b) dispersion slaking, (c) surface slaking, and (d) body slaking.
clays, chemical properties, liquid saturation, illite, ion exchanging, kaolinite, laboratory tests, montmorillonite, shrinkage, slaking, swelling, test methods, moisture content
Senior staff engineer, Woodward-Clyde Consultants, Oakland, Calif.
Professor of Civil Engineering, University of California, Berkeley, Calif.