A methodology to describe spatial surface flux boundary conditions for solving tailings impoundment closure water balance problems
This study presents methodology to calculate the spatial flux boundary functions proposed in the hypothesis, and shows how these flux boundary functions can be used as a direct input for surface flux boundary conditions in multidimensional saturated/unsaturated flow seepage analysis models. This method effectively bridges the gap that currently exists between rigorous coupled soil/atmosphere one-dimensional surface flux boundary numerical models and multidimensional saturated/unsaturated flow seepage analysis models. The effective use of the calculated spatial flux boundary functions is proven through detailed evaluation modeling. The calculation of the flux boundary function stems from the development of a technique whereby the one-dimensional SoilCover surface flux boundary model can be used to solve a two dimensional cross section. The technique consists of a generalized non-dimensionalized tailings impoundment cross-section that comprises a beach profile and a phreatic level function. Material properties and the shape functions have been tested and calibrated through an extensive laboratory and field characterization program of the tailings. The generalized cross-section is divided into a number of equal zones and a SoilCover simulation is performed for each zone before being integrated to give a cumulative result. The cumulative result is tested and calibrated against a detailed transient tailings impoundment water balance. This cumulative result represents the spatial flux boundary function that is consistent with the spatial flux hypothesis. Effectively, what is presented in this thesis is a quasi-three-dimensional model for calculation of surface flux boundary conditions.
Advisor:van der Kamp, Garth; Pufahl, Dennis; Stolte, Bill; Fredlund, Del; Maule, Charles; Wilson, Ward
School:University of Saskatchewan
School Location:Canada - Saskatchewan
Source Type:Master's Thesis
Date of Publication:07/09/2009