Our research involves the identification of the different effects that electromagnetic (EM) stimulation has on varying soil properties; properties such as hydraulic conductivity. This work could prove to be of importance in furthering our understanding of the effects of EM stimulation with regard to the hydraulic conductivity of soil. A positive correlation between EM stimulation and an increase in hydraulic conductivity could have broad applications for environmental contaminant mitigation in soils and for various geotechnical construction applications such as minimizing soil setup during pile driving operations. EM waves can be used to enhance soil and groundwater remediation in a way that no heat is generated, yet the desired mechanisms in soil are stimulated. Our approach in this project involved the construction of a customized permeameter that enabled us to measure the change in hydraulic conductivity given a tuned EM wave from an antenna. An EM wave with a fixed frequency and varying power output was sent through the permeameter while the hydraulic conductivity was measured in real time. Tests performed for the research project were successful in showing a correlation between hydraulic conductivity and EM stimulation.
Dr. Arvin Farid