Rheological analysis and rheological modelling of mud sediments: What is the best protocol for maintenance of ports and waterways?

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Abstract

Natural mud sediments display complex rheological behaviour like thixotropy, viscoelasticity and yield stress. These rheological characteristics can significantly vary over depth, from one mud layer to another, as each layer can have a different density and composition. Fast and reliable measurements of yield stresses of mud samples are important for maintenance operations in ports and waterways. These protocols, performed in the laboratory, should give a rheological fingerprint which is representative of the in-situ behaviour of the mud. In this article, we show that our recently developed stress ramp-up rheological protocol is a time-efficient and well-grounded protocol to determine the yield stresses of natural mud samples by comparing with other existing well-grounded protocols. In this study, we also refine the stress ramp-up protocol such as to reduce the experimental time for different mud layers based on their densities. The protocol was tested on a large number of mud samples obtained from different locations/depths of the Port of Hamburg, Germany. An empirical model is proposed to fit the two-step yielding behaviour that the mud samples exhibit. The model captures the two-step yielding phenomenon in mud samples quite well, within the density range of 1050–1200 kg. m−3. This two-step yielding is a feature of mud samples as found in various harbours and estuaries worldwide in rheometry.
Original languageEnglish
Article number107407
Pages (from-to)1-10
Number of pages10
JournalEstuarine, Coastal and Shelf Science
Volume257
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2021

Keywords

  • Natural mud
  • Yield stress
  • Rheological protocol
  • Flow curve
  • Empirical models

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