Real soil behaviour

This chapter reviews real soil behaviour. It considers clay and sand soils and then soils containing a range of particle sizes. The main facets of soil behaviour are identified by considering results from laboratory tests. Data are presented without prejudice from any theoretical framework, and can therefore be used to verify and compare with the theoretical constitutive models described in subsequent chapters.



The finite element theory presented in Chapter 2 assumed material behaviour to be linear elastic. Unfortunately, real soils do not behave in such an ideal and simple manner. If they did, failure would never occur and geotechnical engineers would probably not be needed. Real soil behaviour is highly nonlinear, with both strength and stiffness depending on stress and strain levels. For realistic predictions to be made of practical geotechnical problems, a more complex constitutive model is therefore required. As this involves nonlinear behaviour, further developments are required to the finite element theory. These developments are presented and discussed in Chapter 9. Due to the complexity of real soil behaviour, a single constitutive model that can describe all facets of behaviour, with a reasonable number of input parameters, does not yet exist. Consequently, there are many models available, each of which has strengths and weaknesses. In Chapters 5, 7 and 8 a variety of constitutive models that have been, and still are, used to represent soil behaviour are described. However, before delving into the complex theory behind these mathematical models, it is useful to consider real soils and identify the important aspects of their behaviour. Such information provides a framework which can then be used to assess and compare the various different constitutive models. Soil behaviour is a complex subject and it is not possible to cover every aspect in a single chapter. Consequently, only the most important issues are discussed here. It is assumed that the reader is familiar with soil mechanics and in particular with conventional laboratory testing of soil samples and the manner in which the results from such tests are presented. The aim is to summarise the more important characteristics of soil behaviour as observed in laboratory tests, rather than to introduce new concepts to the reader. The chapter begins by considering the

Real soil behaviour / 91

behaviour of clay soils. Behaviour under one dimensional compression and when subjected to shear under triaxial stress and strain conditions is presented. The effects of the magnitude of the intermediate principal stress, the orientation of the principal stresses and shearing to large strains on clay behaviour are then discussed. Sand soils are considered in the same way and the differences in behaviour noted. Although pure clay and sand soils do exist, many soils contain a range of particle sizes from clay to sand, with their behaviour reflecting their composition. In the last part of this chapter the behaviour of several of these soils is compared. The chapter ends by summarising the more important facets of soil behaviour which, ideally, should be reproduced by constitutive models.

4.3 4.3.1

Behaviour of clay soils Behaviour under one dimensional compression

The behaviour of clays under one dimensional compression is usually 1 . 4 investigated in an oedometer. 1 . 2 : Typically a cylindrical sample of soil 60mm in diameter and 20mm high is 1 . 0 subjected to vertical compression, while movement in the radial 0 . 8 direction is prevented. Results from a test on reconstituted Pappadai clay 0 . 6 (Cotecchia (1996)) are shown Figure 4.1, where the vertical effective stress, 0 . 4 10000 1000 10 100 av', is plotted against the void ratio, e. (kPa) As is the custom, the vertical effective stress is plotted on a logarithmic Figure 4.1: One dimensional scale. The soil sample has been consolidation of Pappadai clay subjected to compression with two (Cotecchia (1996)) cycles of unloading/reloading. In its initial condition, when placed in the oedometer, the reconstituted clay is in a normally consolidated state represented by point A in Figure 4.1. On loading (increasing av') the sample compresses and its void ratio reduces travelling down the virgin consolidation line (VCL) (i.e. A to B). At B the sample is unloaded and swells travelling along the swelling line BC. On reloading the sample moves along the line CDE. At point D it rejoins the VCL and remains on this line with any further increase in vertical stress. If unloaded again the soil will move along another swelling curve. For example, when unloaded from point E the soil follows the line EF. It is generally assumed that swelling loops, such as BCD and EFG ,are parallel. Soil which is on the VCL is said to be normally consolidated because it has never been subjected to a higher vertical stress. Soil on a swelling loop is defined as overconsolidated, with an overconsolidation ratio (OCR) defined as cr,/max /cr,/,

However. uniform stress and strain conditions are assumed when interpreting the results. see Figure 4.3. 4. and that the swelling loop can be replaced with a single line of gradient Cy. This implies 0.g. hollow cylinder etc.8 much larger change in void ratio than an overconsolidated soil. some geotechnical engineers advocate plotting the results in \og]0e-\og]0(jv' space before making the idealisations for the VCL and swelling loops.e. such an approach is not universally accepted. Although there are loading platens at the top and bottom of the samples which can affect the stress distribution within the sample.0 For an increment of vertical stress Swelling line ok normally consolidated soil suffers a 0. true triaxial. in which a cylindrical sample is subjected to a constant radial stress.2 ever experienced and the current \VCL vertical effective stress. the most common test performed on soils is the conventional triaxial test.6 that overconsolidated soils are much \ stiffer than normally consolidated i 04 100 1000 10000 10 soils. For example. triaxial. However. it is often assumed that the VCL is a straight line in e-loglo0v' space. direct shear. clays in one dimensional To use results like those shown in consolidation Figure 4. However. Overconsolidated soils crv' (kPa) subjected to reloading experience a rapid reduction in stiffness as their Figure 4. Most tests are performed on samples with a diameter of 38mm and a height of 76mm. oa .3 (Connolly (1999)). simple shear. All samples were Ko (i.2 Behaviour when sheared The behaviour of soil when subjected to shear can be investigated in a range of apparatuses (e.92 / Finite element analysis in geotechnical engineering: Theory where cr/max and av' are the maximum vertical effective stress the sample has 1. For example. the latter tests are not popular for clay soils as pore pressure equalisation within the sample takes more time and therefore the tests take much longer to perform. The samples were then Ko unloaded to a particular value of . Typical results from a series of tests performed on Ko consolidated samples of clay from Pentre in Shropshire are shown in Figure 4.3.1 for design purposes simplifications are often introduced. torsional shear.2. while others prefer to plot results in terms of mean effective stress instead of vertical effective stress and/or to use natural logarithms.2: Idealised behaviour of stress state approaches the VCL.). no radial strain) normally consolidated from A to B. and then sheared by either increasing (triaxial compression). respectively. or reducing (triaxial extension) the axial stress. 1. or. with a gradient Cc. see Figure 4. although tests on larger samples with diameters of 50mm or 100mm and heights of 100m or 200mm are sometimes performed (especially when the effects of macrofabric are of interest). Some of these idealisation are discussed in greater depth in subsequent chapters.

the (Connolly (1999)) stress paths for the heavily overconsolidated samples (0CR>3) bend to the right. greater than that at ultimate failure. as undrained conditions were enforced this resulted in the Figure 4.001 0. having a smaller mean effective stress at the end of the test than they had at the beginning. cpj. by either increasing or decreasing the axial stress. At this point all drainage valves were closed and the samples were sheared undrained to failure.3. c1. Several important facets of soil behaviour are evident in this plot. This implies a peak effective strength. In contrast. and an angle of shearing resistance. The resulting effective stress paths are shown in Figure 4. This implies dilatant behaviour and the generation of tensile (negative) pore water pressures. when -200L sheared.3.Real soil behaviour / 93 400 r overconsolidation ratio.3: Effective triaxial stress generation of compressive (positive) paths for laminated Pentre clay pore water pressures. sometimes for heavily overconsolidated clay the stress paths pass above the critical state line before they reach failure. This line is often referred to as the critical state line and is defined by an angle of shearing resistance. in terms of a cohesion. however. the samples tried to contract. Although not evident in Figure 4. The stress states of all samples at failure tend to plot on a straight line which passes through the origin. with each sample having a different OCR.01 0. 0. This implies that.1 Axial strain (%) 1 Figure 4. The relevant cpj angles for the stress paths shown in Figure 4.4: Undrained Young's moduli for Pentre clay (Connolly (1999)) . Firstly. cp''.3 are 32° and 28° for compression and extension respectively. the effective stress paths for samples with an 0CR<3 bend to the left.

3. In . All samples were first consolidated along path ABC and then swelled to D. are shown in Figures 4. The (Soga etal.4b. occurs before the full angle of shearing resistance has been mobilised. From the above observations it is clear that the overconsolidation ratio and the magnitude of the mean effective stress have a large influence on soil behaviour. In contrast.4b. The variation of stiffness with strain for the probing stages of these tests is shown in Figures 4. sa~eao.8. However. but more importantly they indicate a nonlinear relationship between stiffness and mean effective stress.4a and 4. for the compression and extension tests respectively. The variation of secant Young's modulus Eu {r{oa-Ga^l{ea-eaX (where oao and eao are the axial total stress and the axial strain just prior to undrained shearing respectively) with change in axial strain. it should be noted that both OCR and the mean effective stress. These plots clearly show that the soil becomes progressively less stiff as it is sheared. 4. This has been investigated by Smith (1992) who performed a set of triaxial probing tests on Bothkennar clay. /?'.5: Dependence of kaolin only in that the magnitude of the stiffness on stress level consolidation stress changes. The tests differ Figure 4.94 / Finite element analysis in geotechnical engineering: Theory For lightly overconsolidated samples the deviator stress (=(cr a '-o/ )) reaches a peak value and then reduces as ultimate failure is approached. At point D the samples were allowed to age before being sheared drained along a variety of stress path directions. which is defined as half the maximum deviator stress. where the 10"5 10"3 10' 2 10' 1 Shear strain (%) results from four torsional tests on isotropically normally consolidated kaolin are presented. Su.4 that the stiffness magnitude depends on OCR. see Figure 4. Ko conditions were applied over portions BC and CD of this stress path. The effect on stiffness of stress level alone is shown in Figure 4.3 Effect of stress path direction The direction of the stress path also affects the stiffness characteristics of the soil. This occurs for all samples. vary for each test.// {=(ax'+a2'+0^)13). but is particularly marked for the lightly overconsolidated samples where the stiffness drops by more than an order of magnitude.6. This implies that the undrained strength. (1995)) results indicate the typical decay of stiffness with strain as shown in Figures 4.5 (Soga et al (1995)). It is therefore not possible to identify the influence of each of these parameters from the data presented. for the heavily overconsolidated samples the deviator stress obtains its highest value at ultimate failure.4a and 4. It is also evident from Figure 4.7 and 4.

cr3. where a is the angle between the direction of the . Also shown on Figure 4. LCD30 1500 IVUV 800 - a. is vertical (i. obtained from seismic tests performed at Bothkennar.0 Figure 4..3. 7: Bulk stiffness for Bothkennar clay (Smith (1992)) Figure 4. 600 " «5 400 LCD70 LCD315 200 0 0. a2. cr.Real soil behaviour / 95 Figure 4.8 is the value of the shear modulus.7 the equivalent tangent bulk modulus.e. The equivalent tangent shear modulus. The differences between these two types of test are that in the compression tests the intermediate principal stress. Gtan (=A(aaf-arf)/3Aes).6: Probing stress paths for and in this respect agree with the data Bothkennar clay (Smith (1992)) given in Figure 4. p\ is plotted against accumulated volumetric strain from the start of the probing stage.001 1.4 Effect of the magnitude of the intermediate principal stress As noted above. es (=2/3 (ea-er))9 in p' (fcPa) Figure 4.4 for Pentre clay. the drained strength parameters of Pentre clay vary depending on whether the clay is subjected to triaxial compression or extension. is equal to the minor principal stress. normalised by the mean effective stress. and the major principal stress. normalised hyp' is plotted against accumulated triaxial deviatoric strain from the start of the 30 40 probing stage. Both of these plots indicate that the soil stiffness decreases as the sample is strained Figure 4.8. Gsejsmic. a = 0°. However.8: Shear stiffness for Bothkennar clay (Smith (1992)) 4. ev . KtJ (=Apf/Aev). they also show that the magnitude of the stiffness and the manner in which it decays with strain depend on the direction of the probing stress path.

. a2. These results indicated that in plane strain Su was about 25% higher than in triaxial extension (i. However.e. while for plane strain compression a = 0° and the intermediate stress a2 is somewhere between ax and a3. with the plane strain and triaxial tests giving 34. true triaxial. compression or extension. cp\ little difference was observed.3° and 33. as is discussed in later sections of this chapter. the strength difference could result from the magnitude of the intermediate principal stress. Vaid and Campanella (1974) tested similar samples of Ko normally consolidated undisturbed Haney clay in both triaxial and plane strain compression. o". or the orientation. Its exact value is difficult to measure in plane strain tests. a.8° respectively.e. where GVC' is the vertical effective consolidation stress). For sands and sand-clay mixtures the effects on <p' appear to be greater. but the test data that are available suggest that 0A5<[(G2-(J3)/(G]-G3)]<0.8°. and therefore the value of a has a much larger effect on both Su and <p'.e. data exist from conventional triaxial and plane strain tests on the same soil and it is of interest to compare such results.e.211 and 0. For clays. there were only small differences in the peak angle of shearing resistance. Consequently. while for plane strain extension a = 90° and the intermediate stress G2 is again somewhere between ox and a3. Again. A tentative conclusion from the above results from tests on clay is that the value of the intermediate principal stress has a modest effect on Su. The influence of the magnitude of the intermediate principal stress. As noted above.296 and 0. Su loV(! values of 0. however data exist for sands and for clay-sand mixtures and these are discussed subsequently.6° and 29. with all other parameters remaining the same. a comprehensive set of tests on a clay soil have yet to be performed. In triaxial extension G2 = GX and a = 90°. but little effect on cp'. of ah or a combination of both.35. with plane strain and triaxial compression giving values of 31. a2. is considered below. directional shear cell or hollow cylinder apparatuses). a = 90°). S1t9 these tests indicated that in plane strain the strength was some 10% higher than in triaxial compression (i. for triaxial compression a2 = o2 and a = 0°. Vaid and Campanella also performed plane strain and triaxial extension tests on the same Haney clay. a series of tests should be performed in which only this quantity is varied. To date. In order to isolate the effect of the intermediate principal stress. In contrast. in the extension tests the intermediate principal stress. To separate the effects of each of these differences. and the latter stress now acts radially (i. SJGJ values of 0. In terms of the peak angle of shearing resistance. The above results also indicate that the mode of shearing. it is not possible to satisfy this requirement in conventional testing equipment and therefore tests must be performed in specialist equipment (i. Results from tests to quantify the effect of the orientation of the major principal stress are discussed in the next section. special tests must be performed. . equals the major principal stress. G2. In terms of undrained strength.96 / Finite element analysis in geotechnical engineering: Theory major principal stress and the direction of deposition of the soil).168 were obtained in plane strain and triaxial extension respectively).268 were obtained in plane strain and triaxial compression respectively.

In general. . This is evident in the data presented above. and varies with strain level during shearing. In fact. because of the way in which it was originally deposited.e. for a range of clay soils are tabulated in Table 4. However. vertical stress after Ko consolidation/ Figure 4. soil is unlikely to be completely isotropic. it is only likely to be isotropic in the plane normal to its direction of deposition.5 Anisotropy For convenience. limited data exist. a (see insert in Figure 4.9. the undrained strength would be unaffected by the value of a. However. In such a material both strength and stiffness depend on both the magnitude and orientation of the applied stresses. Eh'IEv'. where equivalent isotropic measures of stiffness have been used. a 0 normalised by the vertical consolidation stress. Su. Data on on the undrained shear O OCR=1 strength of Ko consolidated • OCR=4 reconstituted Boston Blue clay are 0. Direction of the major principal stress.Real soil behaviour / 97 4.6 Behaviour at large strains Most laboratory testing devices cannot provide reliable data at large strains (>20%) due to the existence of non-uniformities occurring in the sample. The data suggest that this ratio depends on the clay type and its OCR.0 0 15 30 45 60 75 90 undrained shear strength.3. in recent years special testing devices (e.2 in which similar samples were sheared with different orientations of o.9 the J I I I L 0. For example.i the major principal stress to the direction of deposition. Such a material is usually called 'cross anisotropic' or 'transversely isotropic'. This is one of the reasons why anisotropic effects have been neglected in the past.1. for anisotropy of Boston Biue clay normally consolidated clay and clay (Seah (1990)) with an OCR=4. as a increases. For example. is plotted against a. In Figure 4. It can be seen that the undrained strength drops significantly. the ratios of horizontal to vertical Young's modulus. ap (i. There is also limited evidence that clay has an anisotropic stiffness. 04 r- 4.3 given in Figure 4.9: Undrained strength swelling). it is not easy to investigate the anisotropic behaviour of clays in conventional laboratory triaxial and shear box tests.9). These data come from a series of tests performed in a directional shear cell by Seah (1990).g. indicating a strong anisotropic effect.3. If the clay was isotropic. consequently. 0. directional shear cell and hollow cylinder apparatus) have been developed to investigate anisotropic effects and. laboratory test data are usually interpreted assuming that the clay behaves in an isotropic manner. by up to 50%.

35 0. The results from such tests indicate that. (1971).6 very large very small ~1 0.55 1.84 1. <p/=12°. c/=2 kPa.98 / Finite element analysis in geotechnical engineering: Theory Table 4.4mm. and an angle of shearing resistance. The ring shear device was developed to overcome these shortcomings. dropping well below the peak strength observed at small strains in triaxial tests.4 . for many clays.6mm.1.62 1. peak strength parameters . strength decreases with large strains.0. and an initial thickness of 19mm.8 samples tend to develop localised failure zones at large strains. (1977) Saada et al. In terms of drained strength this residual condition corresponds to a cohesion.8-4. within which the stresses and strains cannot be reliably determined from the instrumentation. A typical result from such a test is shown in Figure 4. During this process the vertical stress is usually maintained constant. (1978) Yong and Silvestri(1979) Graham and Houlsby(1983) Kirkgard and Lade (1991) Soil London clay Reconstituted kaolin Reconstituted kaolin London clay Leda clay Reconstituted Edgar kaolin Champlain clay Winnipeg clay S.2.0.2 0. is sheared torsionally by rotating the top of the sample.10 for London clay (Parathiras (1994)).4 0.007 0.0001 0.6 . Typically. an inner diameter of 101. It can be seen that at large strains the residual shear stress that the soil can sustain is approximately 50% of the peak value mobilised at much smaller strains.0 Eh'/Ev' 1.4 2.6 0. In the version of this apparatus developed by Bishop et al.78 1.Francisco bay mud large Strain level (%) 0.0 2 0. a ring of soil with an outer diameter of 152. until a residual value is reached. while keeping the bottom fixed.1: Review of stiffness ratio for natural and reconstituted clays Reference Ward et al (1959) Kirkpatric and Rennie(1972) Franklin and Mattson(1972) Atkinson (1975) Lo et al.5-1.25 1.

they follow normal compression lines (NCLs) which. (1990). It may therefore be considered that all parts of the deposit have a unique starting point. it is difficult to achieve exactly the same initial void ratio every time.4.Peak shear stress = 45 kPa London clay normally consolidated to av = 100 kPa ts~ Displacement (mm) 90 shearing. at high values of effective stress. 4. the VCL is reached only when the vertical effective stress exceeds 10 MPa. Figure 4. When the two samples are compressed one dimensionally. Sands are more permeable than clays and therefore require shorter testing times. the clay slurry. The magnitude of the vertical stress at which this occurs is dependent on the strength of the soil particles (Coop (1990)). For example. either for a loose or a dense state. it is recognised that the clay begins its existence in the form of a slurry and that its current state results from a combination of consolidation and swelling stages. namely. However. It should be noted that when attempting to set up identical sand samples.11 shows the compression characteristics of two samples of Ticino sand (Pestana (1994)): one initially in a dense state with eo = 0.g due to geological processes). However. As the samples have different initial void ratios.1 Behaviour under one dimensional compression When considering the behaviour of a deposit of sedimentary clay.6. for the loose Ticino sand. approach a unique virgin compression line (VCL).11. as sands can be deposited at different rates. see Potts et al. a multiplicity of initial void ratios of sand for the same stress point. such an assumption is not valid for sands.10: Residual strength of rate of loss of strength from peak to London clay (Parathiras (1994)) residual can be very important in problems involving progressive failure and in situations where established failure surfaces already exist (e.8." % aligning themselves in the direction of . therefore. Consequently. 4.4 Behaviour of sands Many of the features described above for clays also apply to sands.Real soil behaviour / 99 of cp'=l kPa and (pp'=20° are quoted s50 for London clay (Potts et al (1997)). the NCLs are not coincident. sands possess additional complexities in their behaviour due their particulate nature and mode of deposition. shown in Figure 4. the other in a loose state with eo = 0. more extensive testing of sands has been performed. The reduction from peak to residual 1 2 5 conditions is usually associated with the clay particles in the shear zone re. residual strength and the Figure 4. There is. For the dense . resulting in a range of initial densities which influence subsequent behaviour. The results from these tests enable the effects of the magnitude of the intermediate principal stress and of the anisotropic properties to be investigated in detail. Clearly. The VCL is approached when the sand particles start to crush.

indicating a contractant tendency. Stress paths from triaxial compression and extension tests performed on loose Ham River sand (Kuwano (1998)) and dense Dunkirk sand (Kuwano (1998)) are shown in Figures with further loading Figure 4.11: One dimensional behaviour of Tic in o sand (Pestana (1994)) 4.12: Effective triaxial this compressive tendency reduces and becomes dilative. NCL VCL 100 1000 Figure 4. and. For all OCRs the stress paths for both the compression and extension tests initially bend to the left.13 respectively. before being sheared undrained in either 400 triaxial compression or extension.2 Behaviour when sheared As with the behaviour under one dimensional compression. although not shown in Figure 4. imposing negative stress paths for loose Ham River sand {Kuwano (1998)) pore water pressures which bend the . The two figures. although for different sands. Unloading/reloading results in hysteresis loops as discussed above for clay.12 and 4. it is commonly observed that unload/reload loops are parallel when the data is plotted in e-logwav' space.100 / Finite element analysis in geotechnical engineering: Theory sample an even higher vertical stress is required. Consequently. However. Considering the results from the loose Ham River sand shown in Figure 4. indicate typical trends observed in sand 200 soils. the stress levels and behaviour associated with most geotechnical structures usually relate to the early parts of the normal compression curves (NCLs). the behaviour of sand subjected to shearing is also affected by its initial density. which manifests itself in -2001positive (compressive) pore water pressures. the following trends are noted. Both of these plots show results from a series of tests in 600 r which the sand was one dimensionally compressed and then unloaded from its initial state to a series of OCR values. due to the greater number of contact points compared to the loose sample.

Consequently.13: Effective triaxial the compression and extension tests stress paths for dense Dunkirk approach a respective common failure sand (Kuwano (1998)) line at large strains. It is conceivable that a critical state does exist at higher stress levels.13. shown in Figure 4. at large strains this tendency reduces and is replaced by a dilatant one which pushes the stress path along the failure line. The tests are usually stopped when either the pore water cavitates.13 that the looser the sand and the lower the OCR. It can be concluded from Figures 4. For the dense Dunkirk sand. The kink in the stress path at which soil behaviour changes from a compressive to a dilative tendency is often referred to as the 'phase transformation point'. For extension tests on samples with a higher OCR and for all compressive tests only a -200 L dilative tendency is observed. For both the loose and dense sands the failure lines are well defined in both triaxial compression and extension.12 and 4. instead of undrained. These can be represented by straight lines in Figure 4.12 and 4. and cpc'= 37° and (pe'= 25° for dense Dunkirk sand. Once this line is reached both the loose and dense sands have a tendency to dilate and therefore generate negative pore water pressures. If the above tests had been performed drained. but that this can only be reached in special high pressure test apparatus. or when the samples become so non-uniform that measurements of stress and strain are unreliable.13 which pass through the origin of stress space (i. the test apparatus reaches its load capacity. At low stress levels there is some experimental evidence to indicate that the failure lines are curved rather than straight giving angles of shearing resistance cpc' and <pe' that vary with mean effective stress (Stroud (1971)).0).Real soil behaviour / 101 400 r stress path to the right.e. However. the stress paths would have been straight and failure would have occurred when they . For both the loose and dense sands Figure 4. giving compression and extension strengths of cpc'= 33° and (pe'= 22° for loose Ham River sand. which push the stress state further up the failure line. Such a hypothesis has been put forward by Coop (1990) and is consistent with the existence of a unique VCL at high stresses. As the OCR increases the initial contractive tendency reduces and the dilative tendency increases. a similar contractive J followed by dilative tendency is only 400 observed in the extension tests on (kPa) samples with OCRs of 1 and 2. c'= 0. the samples keep on taking higher and higher deviator stress and do not indicate a critical state condition as is usually observed for clays. the greater the initial contractive tendency on shearing.

Such dilation appears to continue until large strains. while of academic interest. The tests differ only in that the 0. when the sample becomes non-uniform and the measurements become unreliable.1 1 Figures 4. As sands are usually highly permeable. such as piles. Eu.15a and 4. undrained conditions only occur when the loading is extremely fast. Similar plots for the dense Dunkirk sand are shown in 0. The effect on stiffness of stress level alone is shown in Figure 4. .001 0. sand behaves in a drained manner and the volume changes at failure do not have a large influence on collapse loads and it is only the inclination of the failure line (i. Kinematically constrained conditions might occur at the base of deep foundations.16.14: Undrained Young's moduli stress level. The variation of secant Young's modulus.15b.1 Axial strain (%) compression stress changes.001 0.14b respectively. is only relevant in practice to undrained problems.e.4. This problem is discussed further in Volume 2 of this book. sa-sao. For many geotechnical structures. The results indicate a nonlinear relationship between stiffness and Figure 4.102 / Finite element analysis in geotechnical engineering: Theory intersected the Mohr-Coulomb failure line.01 0. For further for loose Ham River sand interpretation of these tests the (Kuwano (1998)) reader is referred to Porovic and Jardine(1994). cp') that is important. with axial strain. for the triaxial compression and extension tests on loose Ham River sand are shown in Figure 4. regardless of any further straining.14a and 4. such as shallow foundations and retaining walls. The stress state would then remain at this intersection point. such as under seismic loading. where results from three torsional shear tests on Ko normally compressed loose Ham River sand are presented. These Axial strain (%) plots show similar trends to those for Pentre clay given in Figure 4. and for penetration problems such as interpreting the results from cone penetrometers. or where the sand is kinematically constrained. During further straining dilation would continue to occur with the rate of dilation being dependent on the initial void ratio and OCR of the sample. when the analyses of boundary value problems are considered. The existence and location of a critical state for sand.

001 0.e.1 1 Axial strain.01 0. equals the major principal stress. the drained strength parameters of sand differ depending on whether the sand is subjected to triaxial compression or extension.3.001 0.16: Dependence of sand stiffness on stress level (Porovic and Jardine (1994)) 4. au and the latter stress now acts horizontally (i. is equal to the minor principal stress.e.1 1 Axial strain.0 eo = 0. cr3.01 0. sa. Consequently. a. <r2. a = 90°). of au or a combination of both. in compression tests the intermediate principal stress. In order to investigate the influence of the magnitude of the intermediate principal stress. a = 0°). and the major principal stress. the strength difference could result from the magnitude of the intermediate principal stress. a2. As stated in Section 4. (%) 10 0. y.77 - \ i i ^ — 10" 5 KT* 103 102 10' Shear strain. ea.15: Undrained Young's moduli for dense Dunkirk sand (Kuwano (1998)) Pc' = Pc' = 540 - 600kPa 4 0 0 k P a — ^^ ^ " ^ ^ Pc' = 200kPa ^ i i OCR =1. is vertical (i. In contrast.Real soil behaviour / 103 750 Triaxial compression 600 0.4.4. in extension tests the intermediate principal stress. (%) 10 Figure 4.3 Effect of the magnitude of the intermediate principal stress As noted above. a29 results from isotropically compressed drained true triaxial tests . or the orientation. a2. a}. (%) 10° 10 Figure 4.

45 principal stress always acted in the Cumbria sand vertical direction (i. against a (Hight (1998)). It can be seen that there is an increase of up to 9° in cp' as the intermediate principal stress increases from being equal to a3 (b = 0) towards ox (b= 1).18. (1997). the behaviour of isotropic soils is independent of the orientation of the major principal stress. Several sands have been tested in this way. much larger than that observed for 10 clay soils. The Relative density: 93% Cell pressure: 100 kPa samples were all sheared in a similar manner.17: Effect of 'b' on cp'for is expressed by the value of b sand (Ochiai and Lade (1983)) = (7 (J (J an ( (o'2~ 3y( \~ 3)) d is plotted against the effective angle of shearing resistance. All the tests had b = 0.3 and were similar except for the value of a.2 0.17 the relative magnitude of the intermediate stress Figure 4.e. In Figure 4. cp'. In these tests the 50 orientation of the sample was maintained the same and the major . in the form of the peak angle of shearing resistance. all other things being equal. who tested .18: Effect of 'a' on cp' for sand (Hight (1998)) from Kohata et al. This can be seen in Figure 4. orientation of the direction of ox with respect to the direction of deposition) provide an indication of the degree of anisotropy. 80 90 Sands also exhibit anisotropic stiffness behaviour. a = 0°). 4AA Anisotropy As noted for clays.17 (Ochiai and Lade (1983)). indicating a high degree of anisotropy in the sand.19 which shows results Figure 4. with the exception that the relative magnitude of the intermediate 35 0. The effect of changing a is large.104 / Finite element analysis in geotechnical engineering: Theory 55 on dense Cumbria sand are considered in Figure 4.6 1. The results indicate a marked variation of cpp' with a. Results from a series of hollow cylinder tests performed on Ko Ko compressed Ham River sand normally compressed Ham River sand are presented in Figure 4. q>p.e.8 0.0 principal stress differed from test to test.4 0. differences in behaviour observed in tests performed with different values of a (i. Conversely.

4.1 Comparison of sedimentary soils In this section the behaviour of the following nine sedimentary soils is compared: 1.19 (Konata et aL "997» r where the ratio Ev /Eh' is plotted against the ratio ov'loh'.8.5 which small strain values of Ev' and Eh' could be calculated. m SLB sand series of samples were normally ^ • • • • • compressed with different ratios of r. This is a quartz based sand with approximately 10% calcareous shell fragments. The results also show that the amount of anisotropy is much larger for SLB sand than for both Toyoura and Ticino sand.Real soil behaviour / 105 prismatic samples of a range of sands 2 5 • and gravels. 4. In reality. 0 1 . prepared in a dense state with an initial void ratio. In this respect they differ from the behaviour of many clay soils. the greater the departure from this value the larger the anisotropy. If the samples were isotropic Ev'/Eh'=\. many soils contain a range of particle sizes and their behaviour varies depending on their constitution. soils seldom contain either all clay or all sand sized particles. SLB and Fi9^e 4. The results from three sands. eo = 0.o 0. The samples were then ~ •ft/4 subjected to small cycles of both 1 | I I vertical and horizontal loading from o.65. 2. 5 2.k. Toyoura. .5. The results show that for all three sands the degree of anisotropy changes with ov'/oh'. Ham River sand (HRS) (Kuwano (1998)).5 Behaviour of soils containing both clay and sand While clays and sands have many facets of behaviour in common.4. HRS + 10% (by weight) kaolin (HK) (Georgiannou (1988)).5 1 . This was prepared in a loose state with an initial void ratio en = 0.19: Stiffness anisotropy of sands Ticino.i. Dunkirk sand (DKS) (Kuwano (1998)).0 2. In fact. 4. are shown in Figure 4. 3.5 Behaviour at large strains Sands do not appear to suffer large reductions in their strength properties when subjected to large strains. This is a quartz based sand that was prepared in a loose state with an initial void ratio eo = 0.5 ••" the vertical and horizontal effective 10 stress. In this section the behaviour of some of these soils will be compared and some of the controlling factors identified. For each soil type a . there are several important areas where they differ. ov'loh'.8.

are presented in Figure 4. This is reconstituted low plasticity till which was consolidated from a slurry.23 for eight of the soils listed above. The Pentre clay.65. following Ko consolidation to a range of OCRs. KSS (50% kaolin) and kaolin (100% kaolin) are compared in Figure 4. shows a spread of volume change behaviour. All soils have been tested in the laboratory in a standard triaxial apparatus (Bishop and Wesley (1975)). tests were Psrtide sis? (mm) performed covering a typical range of Figure 4. which was prepared in a loose state with an initial void ratio eo = 0.22. or had laminated or Figure 4. depending on whether the samples were relatively silty or clayey. KSS and Pentre clays . This is an angular silt. Pentre clay (PEN) (Connolly (1999)). Figure 4. In all cases. Silica silt (HPF4) (Zdravkovic (1996)).20: Grading curves for stresses encountered in engineering different soils practice. This is a natural silty clay. This is a natural high plasticity clay.21 compares the compressibility of some of the above soils under Ko conditions. Artificial clay (KSS) (Rossato (1992)). followed by Ko swelling to a range of OCRs.21: Compressibility of marbled macro-structures. This is the same silt as above. with an initial void ratio e0 = 0. Silica silt (HPF4) (Ovando-Shelley (1986)). The results for LCT. Bothkennar clay (BC) (Smith (1992)). which consists of both clay and silt sized particles. This material was prepared by mixing 50% kaolin with 25% fine sand and 25% silt and consolidating it from a slurry. obtained from pure quartz.106 / Finite element analysis in geotechnical engineering: Theory 4. 7. HK (10% kaolin). 8. The samples were sheared undrained in either compression or extension after Ko consolidation.20. 9. It is evident from this figure that the sands have the lowest compressibility and that compressibility increases with clay content. but prepared in a dense state. To different soils emphasize the effect of clay content on compressibility the results for HRS (0% kaolin). Lower Cromer till (LCT) (Gens (1982)). The effective stress paths observed in undrained triaxial compression and extension. The percentages quoted refer to proportion by weight.95. 5. 6. The grading curves for these materials are compared in Figure 4.

pore water pressures. all the loose samples sheared in compression show a tendency to try to contract with the generation of positive shear induced pore water pressures on first shearing. shear induced. and therefore the generation of negative shear induced pore water pressures. The effective stress paths then travel up the failure line to large values of mean effective stress in a similar manner to loose sands. The large strain behaviour of loose HRS is similar to that of the dense DKS. It is evident that the addition of the small quantity of kaolin has a marked effect on the shape of the stress paths.Real soil behaviour / 107 show the typical behaviour associated with clay soils. indicating a tendency to try to dilate and therefore the generation of negative shear induced pore water pressures. resulting in the generation of negative shear induced pore water pressures. Within a range of stresses typically associated with geotechnical structures. This contractive tendency diminishes with increase in OCR and after a critical OCR of about 10 3 is exceeded. On further shearing these samples revert to a tendency to dilate. they show no sign of reaching a well defined final stress state. With dense DKS the shearing in compression leads to the mean effective stress increasing for all OCRs. Further tests were performed by Georgiannou (1988) with different amounts of kaolin. pore water pressures. the onset of a tendency to try to compress and therefore generate positive excess pore water pressures is abrupt and so intense that it results in a drop in deviatoric stress.22: Effect of clay content well defined final state which on compressibility of soil corresponds to critical state conditions. Quite large positive shear induced pore water pressures are generated before the material undergoes phase transformation and begins to try to dilate. However at low OCRs the extension tests indicate an initial contractive tendency (positive shear induced pore water pressures) followed by a tendency to try to dilate. shear induced. Both triaxial compression and . The behaviour of sand is illustrated by the results from HRS and DKS. HK consists of 90% HRS mixed with 10% kaolin. For both the compression and extension tests the effective stress paths travel along an inclined failure line to high values of mean effective stress. Some of the results for Ko normally consolidated samples are shown in Figure 4. the samples show a 200 50 100 500 av( (kPa) tendency to try to dilate producing negative.24.8. However. For the HK compression tests. It is interesting to compare the results from the tests on HRS and HK in more detail. All stress paths indicate a Figure 4. The stress paths for normally consolidated samples all indicate a contractive tendency giving rise to positive. The same behaviour is observed at high OCRs when the sand is sheared in extension. Both soils had an initial void ratio of 0.

'-a.1-*.1) (kPa) 600 (kPa) (kPa) -200 Loose Ham River sand (HRS) (o.108 / Finite element analysis in geotechnical engineering: Theory (a.23: Effective stress paths in undrained triaxiai compression and extension for different soil types . 300 ) p' (KPa) 100 "'200 N 0 -100 300/400 500 Natural Pentre clay (PEN) -200 Kaolin-silt-sand (KSS) Figure 4.'-a3') (kPa) 200 r 200 Loose silica silt (HPF4) 200 100 p ' (kPa) p ' (kPa) 200 -200 Dense silica silt (HPF4) (kPa) -100 I (CT/-cy3') (kPa) 3UU Lower Cromer till (LCT) («) 300 r 200 100 0 -100 -200 200 100 ' (kPa) 100 200.1) (kPa) 400 a.'-o. ) (kPa) 1 Dense Dunkirk sand (DKS) P' (kPa) 100 Loose Ham River sand +kaolin (HK) (a.

In a similar fashion to that observed for dense sands. Zdravkovic (1996) also performed 250 complex hollow cylinder tests on dense HPF4 silt. (p\ with a for all these materials and the dense HPF4 are given in Figure 4. Comparing the behaviour of the -200 silt HPF4 with the other materials it is evident that it follows the general pattern established for sands. The dense HPF4 shows a strongly dilative tendency in compression and does not reach a clear peak resistance or critical state in either compression or extension.5% and 3. For 200 comparison.25: Anisotropic stiffness properties of silt behaviour.24: Effect of clay content on effective stress paths samples of HPF4 behave similarly to (Georgiannou (1988)) loose HRS. with the mean effective stress falling by up to 50% before reaching the phase transformation point.Real soil behaviour / 109 400 extension tests on HRS/kaolin mixtures. The variation of the angle of shearing resistance. are shown. One objective of these tests was to investigate strength anisotropy.')/2 (kPa) behaviour. with 7. its yielding characteristics appear to be less clearly associated with those shown by normally consolidated samples. A far more contractive tendency is observed in extension. and shear modulus. when tested in an overconsolidated state.0 Deviatoric strain.5% (by weight) kaolin.1 1. Loose Figure 4.25 in the form of the variation of vertical and horizontal Young's moduli. Consequently. Ed. Ed. Ev' and Eh'. The large differences between Ev' and Eh' clearly indicate a strong anisotropic Figure 4. with 0. Clearly the addition of only a small quantity of clay can have a major effect on soil 300 400 (a. All tests were . Gvh. Hollow cylinder tests have also been performed on KSS and HK (Menkiti (1995)) and HRS (Hight (1998)).01 0. results from tests on pure HRS are also shown. The decrease in stiffness (Zdravkovic (1996)) with increase in strain is typical of most soils as discussed in the previous sections of this chapter. the dense HPF4 exhibits a weaker 'memory' of its past stress history than do most clay soils. Results for Ko consolidated silt with an OCR=\3 are shown in Figure 4. From some of these 200 tests it was possible to determine the anisotropic stiffness properties.26. (%) increase in deviatoric strain.+cT. and dense HPF4 responds in the same way as dense DKS.

CT ' = 200 kPa a) As weathering is not a uniform process. Due to the highly variable nature of many residual soils it is often difficult to obtain an accurate picture of the effects of bonding. Bressani(1990). there is a much larger variation in cp' for HRS than there is for KSS. residual soils have a wide variation in cohesive strength. the bonded structure of these Axial strain (%) soils affects their behaviour. They also indicate that the degree of anisotropy reduces as the clay content increases.110/ Finite element analysis in geotechnical engineering: Theory performed with the intermediate stress. having a bonded structure and therefore possessing considerable cohesion.27 (Lagioia (1994) and 3 0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 90 . The weathering process reduces the number and the strength of the bonds. 10 20 As an example of the behaviour of Axial strain (%) a residual soil. results from two triaxial compression tests on Gravina Figure 4. 4. The results show that cp' is affected by the value of a and therefore that the soils are anisotropic. Figure 4. For example. This has led some researchers to manufacture artificial bonded soils (Maccarini (1987).2 Residual soils So far the discussion and data a0 presented in this chapter have been concerned with sedimentary soils. cr2. In contrast.27: Stress-strain behaviour di Puglia calcarenite are shown in of calcarenite (Lagioia (1994)) Figure 4. 10 20 Clearly. residual soils are formed in-situ by weathering 1000of parent rock. transported by either water or wind and then deposited in a new location. having a value between ox and cr3.5. The initial parent rock is often quite strong.26: Variation of (p' with a Such soils are essentially eroded from for some soils parent rock.

This behaviour continues until the axial strain reaches approximately 10% at which point the material begins to harden again and behave like an unbonded sample.28b. In terms of an angle of shearing resistance. Ip. this softening is quite steep but with further straining it becomes more moderate. Such a drop in strength at large strains is not observed for sands.3. cpr' is relatively small and much lower than the peak value. They show that at low clay fractions turbulent shearing involves rolling and translation of soil particles. The spiky nature of the stress strain curve up to an axial strain of 10% is believed to reflect the erratic process involved in bond degradation. The effect of clay fraction on residual strength has been considered in detail by Lupini et al. As the value of the plasticity index reflects the clay fraction this data indicate a similar trend to the data observed in Figure 4. Both samples were isotropically consolidated and then sheared drained. Closer inspection of this part of the loading curve indicates that the samples are behaving in an approximately isotropic linear elastic manner.Real soil behaviour / 111 Lagioia and Nova (1995)).28a. When sheared the soil is initially very stiff. The behaviour from then on resembles that of an unbonded sample of the same material. At first. The behaviour during this process is clearly dependent on the level of the mean effective stress.5. However. but when the deviatoric stress reaches 1200 kPa the bonds begin to break and the sample is unable to sustain further deviatoric stress and therefore the stress strain curve shows a softening effect.27b which shows the results for a similar sample but this time isotropically consolidated to 1300 kPa before being sheared. the sample is initially very stiff. In contrast. Different behaviour can be observed in Figure 4. For soils containing both sand and clay sized particles the behaviour depends on their clay content. In both samples the stress-strain behaviour is approximately linear until bond degradation begins in earnest when the deviator stress reaches 1200 kPa. for high clay fractions shearing can involve sliding between clay particles . (1981). it is not unusual for the residual value to be half of the peak value for clays. which shows how the residual angle of shearing resistance. This is illustrated in Figure 4. having a value similar to the peak angle of shearing resistance. Further data on residual strength is given in Figure 4.3 Residual strength It was noted in Section 4. at clay fractions greater than 40%. <p/ is sensitive to the clay content. After approximately 15% axial strain the devaitoric stress increases and the material begins to harden.6 that when clays are sheared to very large strains their strength decreases from a peak value to a residual value. <p/9 varies with clay fraction (% of clay in terms of volume) for several real soils. For low clay fractions (< 20%) cpr' is high. <p. The results shown in Figure 4.28a. where q>r' are plotted against plasticity index. However. Again. For clay fractions between 20% and 40%. rather than direct sliding. the deviator stress does not reduce but remains constant. when the deviatoric stress reaches nearly 1200 kPa and bond degradation begins.27a are for a sample consolidated to a mean effective stress of 200kPa. 4.

they require many input parameters. Consequently. it is more important to model accurately the stiffness behaviour of the soil. For example. However. some of which are not easily obtained from conventional site investigation or laboratory test data. it is important that the model can at least reproduce the soil behaviour that is dominant in the problem under investigation. although they have the ability to accurately reproduce soil behaviour. (1967) (a) Mangla (b) Jari Blondeau & Josseaume (1976) 4.e. in practice a compromise has to be made between using an advanced model. if the problem is likely to involve soil instability. if the concern is over soil movements. which is often the case. If the compromise is towards using the simpler models. _ -•• Skempton(1964) Borowicka(1965) Binnie etal. both bulk and shear.6 Concluding remarks 1 20 - 10 Ideally any constitutive model should be able to simulate all the above a) i i I i facets of soil behaviour. for example in slope stability and retaining wall design. • " " " • " " ' 4. Some of these are discussed in Chapter 8 where it is shown that. The stiffness.1 1 2 / Finite element analysis in geotechnical engineering: Theory and that with straining the clay particles become aligned. for example when assessing movements adjacent to a multistrutted excavation. which 0 20 40 60 80 100 Plasticity index*/^ {%} requires the results from special laboratory tests to define its Figure 4. . 40 30 =---. 40 60 80 100 20 only very advanced models are able Clay fraction (%) to do this. then clearly it is important to model correctly the soil strength. i.28: Effect of clay fraction parameters. which and plasticity index on residual may not reproduce all facets of soil angle of shearing resistance behaviour. However. as the mean effective stress. p\ increases and/or the void ratio reduces. It is this sliding and realignment that explains the low residual strengths. and simple models.7 Summary From the preceding discussions the following important facets of soil behaviour can be identified: 1. (1981)) from the available data. of a soil element increases as the soil particles are pressed closer together. but can be readily defined (Lupinietal.

i. after reaching the failure criterion. heavily overconsolidated clays and dense sands attempt to dilate (expand) on shearing. the volume change tendencies are still there and therefore negative shear induced pore water pressures are generated in dilatant phases of soil behaviour and positive shear induced pore water pressures occur during the compressive phases. due to an increase in deviator stress and strain. 3. where their capacity to sustain deviatoric stress reduces with further straining. However. In conventional soil mechanics a MohrCoulomb failure criterion is usually adopted. 7. A soil element fails when a certain stress state is reached. Many real soils contain a range of particle sizes and their behaviour depends on their composition. A small amount of clay particles can have a large influence on the behaviour of sands. Undrained failure is not as well defined for sands as for clays.Real soil behaviour / 113 2. Most soils show some tendency to behave in an anisotropic manner. On a change in the stress path direction the stiffness of the soil is likely to increase. Such a stress state forms part of a failure criterion. However. loose sands may revert to a tendency to dilate as failure is approached. . This change in stiffness is particularly marked at the beginning of shearing when the deviatoric strains are quite small. At low stress levels there is a greater tendency to dilate. whereas at very high stress levels even dense sands compress. It is particularly noticeable if there is a complete reversal in direction and the soil is unloaded. whereas lightly overconsolidated clays and loose sands attempt to compress. Generally. Some soils show brittle behaviour. volume changes are suppressed. 6. This increase depends on the amount that the stress path changes direction. If a fully saturated soil is sheared undrained. Overconsolidated soils experience a rapid reduction in stiffness when a stress state associated with the pre-consolidation stress is reached. 5.e. 4. 8. The shear stiffness reduces as the soil is sheared. The tendency to dilate also depends on mean effective stress.

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