Subsoil in desert regions is a product of temperature changes, wind and rainfall. Soil in a subtropical climate, such as that of Saudi Arabia, would be the best representative example for the study of soil condition in arid and extremely arid regions. A high temperature climate increases evaporation and reduces moisture in the soil, resulting in development of salt-bearing soil. Depending upon some geological, climatic considerations salt content in Saudi Arabia soil is invariably high. Understanding and anticipating the nature of changes in such considerations and the associated geotechnical problems in these regions is very important for practising engineers in the area. This is particularly important during the design and construction stage, in order to evaluate and solve unforeseen problems. The foundation problems which arise due to various concentrations of sodium or calcium chlorides in desert soils are pinpointed and discussed. The influence of the salt on the laboratory-observed properties of desert soil is investigated.
- © The Geological Society 1985