Most soils show a swelling behaviour depending on their water content: this property can strongly affect the effectiveness of agriculture. Because of the importance of the topic, this paper is aimed at investigating a given vertisol in terms of swelling and shrinkage with variations in its humidity. For this, a suitable experimental setup was realised, tested and used allowing the study of the effect that the soil-fluiddynamics parameters have on the process. The results showed that swelling is more evident at lower water content values. Also relevant the initial compaction of the soil, that proved to increase the percentage swelling especially at low humidities. A hypothesis concerning the effect on swelling of the solid apparent volumic mass associated to the initial humidity is also formulated, even if more related research on this issue is necessary.

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