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RELATIVE DENSITY DETERMINATION

Aim: To determine the relative density of cohesionless soil using a vibrating table.
Reference IS Code: IS:2720 (part 14)
Other references:
ASTM D 4254- Standard Test Methods for minimum Index Density and Unit Weight
of soils and calculation of Relative Density.
ASTM D 4253- Standard Test Methods for Maximum Index Density and Unit Weight
of Soils Using Vibrating Table.

Apparatus required:
1. Vibrating table
2. Mold assembly consisting of standard mold
3. Pouring device (Funnel)
4. Guide sleeves
5. Surcharge base plate with handle
6. Surcharge weight
7. Balance
8. Scoop
9. Metal Straight edge
10. Timing device
11. Dial gauge
12. Dial gauge holder
Brief theory:
The relative density of soil is the ratio, expressed as a percentage, of the difference between
the maximum index void ratio and the field void ratio of a cohesionless, free-draining soil, to
the difference between its maximum and minimum index void ratios.
D
r
=
(c
o
-c
mn
)
(c
max
-c
mn )
=
y
dmcx
(y
d
-y
dmin
)
y
d
(y
dmcx
-y
dmin
)

(1)

Where, e
0
= void ratio of soil
e
max
= maximum void ratio
e
min
= minimum void ratio

d
= density of soil

dmax
= maximum density of soil

dmin
= minimum density of soil

Procedure:
Determination of minimum density
1. Measure volume of mould (V) by direct measurement or filling of water and area of
the mould (A).
2. Take the empty weight of mould (W
1
).
3. Take oven dried sample and fill the mould as loosely as possible by the help of
pouring device (funnel). Adjust funnel such that height of free fall should 25mm.
4. Top surface should be leveled at top by use of straight edge.
5. Determine the weight of mould and soil (W
2
).
Determination of maximum density
1. Fill the mould with oven dry sand and keep the surcharge base plate on the soil
surface.
2. Take the initial dial gauge readings on two opposite sides of the surcharge base plate
and calculate the average value D
i
.
3. Assemble guide sleeve on the top of the mould in such a way that inner surface of
sleeve and mould should be in line.
4. Place the surcharge weight on the base plate and keep mould on the vibratory deck for
assembly.
5. Operate the vibration table at maximum amplitude for 8 minutes.
6. Remove the surcharge weight and sleeve.
7. Take the final dial gauge readings on two opposite sides of the surcharge base plate,
and calculate the average value D
f
.
8. Dissemble the mould from the mould take the weight of mould (W
3
).
9. Keep the value of maximum, minimum and field density of soil in equation (1) for the
calculation of relative density.
OBSERVATION SHEET
Experiment No.:---------- Date: ----------
Name of student: ---------------- Roll No.: ------
Diameter of mould: ______________ Area of mould (A):_____________
Height of mould: _______________ Mass of empty mould (W
1
)________
Measurements Trial 1 Trial 2 Trial 3
Meight of mould and loose soil
(W
2
):

Initial dial gauge readings
Final dial gauge readings
Mass of mould and soil after
vibration (W
3
)

Calculations:
1. Minimum density :
d min
= (W
2
-W
1
)/V

2. Maximum density:
d max
= (W
3
W
1
)/V
s


Where V
s
= final volume of the soil in maximum density test
= V (D
i
-D
f
). A