Compacted bentonites are attracting greater attention as back-filling (buffer) materials for high-level nuclear waste repositories. For this purpose, it is very important to quantitatively evaluate the swelling characteristics of compacted bentonite. New equations for evaluating the relationship between the swelling deformation of compacted bentonite and the distance between two montmorillonite layers are derived. New equations for evaluating the ion concentration of pore water and the specific surface of bentonite, which significantly influence the swelling characteristics of compacted bentonite, are proposed. Furthermore, a prediction method for the swelling characteristics of compacted bentonite is presented by combining the new equations with the well-known theoretical equations of repulsive and attractive forces between two montmorillonite layers. The applicability of this method was investigated by comparing the predicted results with laboratory test results on the swelling deformation and swelling pressure of compacted bentonites.
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