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A graphical method has been developed for determining the coefficient of consolidation from the transient phases of a flow-pump permeability test. The flow pump can be used to infuse fluid into or withdraw fluid from a laboratory sediment specimen at a constant volumetric rate in order to obtain data that can be used to calculate permeability using Darcy's law. Representative type-curve solutions to the associated forced-flow and pressure-decay models are derived. These curves provide the basis for graphically evaluating the permeability k, the coefficient of consolidation cv, and the coefficient of volume change mv. The curve-matching technique is easy and rapid. Values of k, cv and mv for a laterally confined kaolinite specimen were determined by this graphical method and appear to be in reasonably good agreement with numerically derived estimates (within 20%). Discrepancies between the two sets of results seem to be largely a function of data quality.
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Graphical method for determining the coefficient of consolidation cv from a flow-pump permeability test