Liquefaction

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In physics, to liquefy (sometimes spelled liquify) means to turn something into the liquid state.

Contents

In Geology

By undermining the foundations and base courses of infrastructure, liquefaction, seen here during the 2011 Canterbury earthquake, can cause serious damage.

In geology, liquefaction refers to the process by which saturated, unconsolidated sediments are transformed into a substance that acts like a liquid.[1]

Earthquakes can cause soil liquefaction where loosely packed, water-logged sediments come loose from the intense shaking of the earthquake. The United State Geological Survey (USGS) creates liquefaction susceptibilty maps to help the general public as well as land-use planners, utilities and lifeline owners, and emergency response officials assess their risk from liquefaction.[2]

The term liquefaction is commonly misapplied to the displaced, saturated sediment as opposed to the process by which it was formed.

In other sciences

In physics, chemistry, and genetic engineering
Liquefaction is referred to as liquefaction of gases, the process of condensing a gas into a liquid. Liquefaction can be a change from a gas to a liquid through condensation, usually by cooling, or a change from a solid to a liquid through melting, usually by heating or by grinding and blending with another liquid to induce dissolution.
In economics
Liquefy can be used as a synonym for liquidate, to turn hard assets into cash.
In biology
Liquefaction often involves organic tissue turning into a more liquid state. For example, liquefactive necrosis in pathology, or liquefaction as a parameter in semen analysis.

Research on Liquefaction

The George E. Brown, Jr. Network for Earthquake Engineering Simulation (NEES) hosts two geotechnical centrifuges for studying soil behavior. The NEES centrifuge at University of California Davis has radius of 9.1 m (to bucket floor), maximum payload mass of 4500 kg, and available bucket area of 4.0 m2.[3] The centrifuge is capable of producing 75g's of centrifugal acceleration at its effective radius of 8.5 m. The centrifuge capacity in terms of the maximum acceleration multiplied by the maximum payload is 53 g x 4500 kg = 240 g-tonnes. The NEES centrifuge at the Center for Earthquake Engineering Simulation (CEES) at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute has a nominal radius, 2.7 m, which is the distance between the center of payload and the centrifuge axis. The space available for the payload is a depth of 1,000 mm, width of 1,000 mm, height of 800 mm, and a maximum height of 1,200 mm. The performance envelope is 160 g, 1.5 tons, and 150 g-tons (product of payload weight times g).[4]

References

  1. ^ USGS, About Liquefaction, http://geomaps.wr.usgs.gov/sfgeo/liquefaction/aboutliq.html
  2. ^ USGS, Liquefaction Hazard Maps, http://earthquake.usgs.gov/regional/nca/qmap/
  3. ^ UC Davis NEES Center for Geotechnical Modeling http://nees.ucdavis.edu/centrifuge.php
  4. ^ Center for Earthquake Engineering Simulation https://www.nees.rpi.edu/equipment/centrifuge/