Download the full-sized PDF of Stabilization of oil sands tailings using vacuum consolidationDownload the full-sized PDF



Permanent link (DOI):


Export to: EndNote  |  Zotero  |  Mendeley


This file is in the following communities:

Graduate Studies and Research, Faculty of


This file is in the following collections:

Theses and Dissertations

Stabilization of oil sands tailings using vacuum consolidation Open Access


Other title
oil sands tailings
Time Domain Reflectometry
Unsaturated soil
Type of item
Degree grantor
University of Alberta
Author or creator
Abazari Torghabeh, Ehsan
Supervisor and department
Dave Sego (Civil Engineering)
Ward Wilson (Civil Engineering)
Examining committee member and department
Dirk van Zyl (Mining, UBC)
Michael Lipsett (Mechanical Engineering)
Josef Szymanski (Mining )
Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering
Geotechnical Engineering
Date accepted
Graduation date
Doctor of Philosophy
Degree level
ABSTRACT This research is an experimental design and numerical analysis of a novel technique of the vacuum consolidation of Mature Fine Tailings (MFT). A meso-scale test was conducted to examine the feasibility of the MFT dewatering process. Vacuum consolidation involves applying a negative water pressure to the coke layer overlain by a saturated sand layer and underlain by MFT. Numerical modeling was conducted using the finite element program SoilVision to model the meso-scale experiment. Unsaturated behavior of Suncor coke, Suncor sand and MFT was investigated using Tempe pressure cell and capillary rise in an open tube prior to commencement of tests. Results indicate that a flux of water flows from the MFT layer into the coke layer which is indicative of the MFT dewatering. The modeling analysis indicates that suction has little effect on the settlement while the overburden has the significant effect on consolidation. This thesis also illustrates the importance of recalibrating TDR probes for different materials. The three layered system testing of MFT, Suncor coke and Suncor sand indicates that applying suction causing MFT to dewater, can set the stage for a four layered system in which another layer of MFT is placed on top of the sand layer. The suction applied to the coke layer causes the double-drained MFT to dewater faster.
Permission is hereby granted to the University of Alberta Libraries to reproduce single copies of this thesis and to lend or sell such copies for private, scholarly or scientific research purposes only. Where the thesis is converted to, or otherwise made available in digital form, the University of Alberta will advise potential users of the thesis of these terms. The author reserves all other publication and other rights in association with the copyright in the thesis and, except as herein before provided, neither the thesis nor any substantial portion thereof may be printed or otherwise reproduced in any material form whatsoever without the author's prior written permission.
Citation for previous publication

File Details

Date Uploaded
Date Modified
Audit Status
Audits have not yet been run on this file.
File format: pdf (Portable Document Format)
Mime type: application/pdf
File size: 3070905
Last modified: 2015:10:12 16:45:56-06:00
Filename: Abazari_Ehsan_Convocation 2013-2.pdf
Original checksum: 5edd7ded5a1638ac16efb1f5e1cd1345
Well formed: true
Valid: true
Page count: 157
Activity of users you follow
User Activity Date