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VALLIAMMAI ENGINEERING COLLEGE

DEPARTMENT OF CIVIL ENGINEERING

SUBJECT CODE

: CE6405

YEAR : II

SUBJECT NAME

: SOIL MECHANICS

SEM : IV

QUESTION BANK
(As per Anna University 2013 regulation)

UNIT 1- SOIL CLASSIFICATION AND COMPACTION
Nature of soil – phase relationships – Soil description and classification for engineering purposes, their
significance – Index properties of soils - BIS Classification system – Soil compaction – Theory,
comparison of laboratory and field compaction methods – Factors influencing compaction behaviour of
soils.
PART-A (2 marks)
1
2
3

Define degree of saturation and shrinkage ratio
What are the Atterberg limits? List its types.
If the volume of voids is equal to the volume of solids in a given soil sample, find
Void ratio and porosity.
4 Define Porosity.
5 Define compaction.
6 Define plasticity index and flow index.
7. Distinguish between Relative density and relative compaction.
8. Discuss about water content of a soil mass
9 Differentiate between plasticity and consistency.
10 What do understand from grain size distribution?
11 A compacted sample of soil with a bulk unit weight of 19.62kN/m3 has a water

BT - 1- 1
BT - 1-2
BT - 1- 3

content of 15 percent. Calculate its dry density, degree of saturation and air content?
Assume G = 2.65.
What is a zero air voids line? Draw a compaction curve and show the zero air
voids line.
Using phase diagram, derive the relationship between void ratio and porosity.
Write any two engineering classification system of soil.
Mention the classification of soil system
Explain the term optimum moisture content of soil.
Compose a relation for γsat with G, γw and e.
A dry clay has a mass of 30g and volume of 15cc, What will be the shrinkage
limit if the specific gravity of solids is 2.65
Draw the phase diagram for completely dry and fully saturated soil mass.

BT– 3 - 1

12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19

BT- 1 – 4
BT- 1- 5
BT – 1 - 6
BT - 2 -1
BT- 2 – 2
BT- 2 – 3
BT- 2 -4

BT- 3 – 2
BT- 3 – 3
BT- 4- 1
BT- 4- 2
BT – 4 -3
BT- 5 -1
BT – 5 - 2
BT- 6- 1

Prepared by
T. R. Banu chander A.P. / Civil
R. Thenmozhi A.P. / Civil
T. Sakthi Subramani A.P. / Civil

8kN/m3. How many cubic meter of compacted fill could be constructed of 3500m3 of sand excavated from the borrow 7 8 9 pit. ii) sedimentation analysis Sandy soil in a borrow pit has unit weight of solids as 25. if the required value of porosity in the compacted fill is 30%. / Civil T. Banu chander A.P.4 BT – 4 BT.4kN/m3. / Civil . find the void BT – 1 ratio and degree of saturation of the compacted embankment. Summarize with neat sketches of compaction methods Discuss about the grain size distribution of soil by i) sieve analysis.6 Prepared by T. Thenmozhi A. By three phase soil system. Explain the factors affecting the compaction of soil. Explain the soil classification system.6. water content BT – 1 BT – 2 BT – 2 BT -3 equal to11% and bulk unit weight equal to 16. show that the degree of saturation S (as ratio) in terms of mass unit weight(γ). air content and percentage air voids at the maximum dry unit weight.92g/cm3. PART-B (16marks) 1 2 3 4 5 6 Describe the procedure for determining water content and specific gravity of a given soil in the laboratory by using a pycnometer. S. If the specific gravity of the sand is 2. Index Soil A Soil B 1 Plastic limit 16% 19% 2 Liquid limit 30% 52% 3 Flow index 11 06 4 Natural water content 32% 40% BT.5 BT. Also calculate the change in degree of saturation.specific gravity of soil grains(G) and unit weight of water (γ w) is given by the expression: BT – 1 An earth embankment is compacted at a water content of 18% to a bulk density of 1. R.2 Which of the clays A or B would experience larger settlement under identical loads? Conclude with your comments.P. A laboratory compaction test on soil having specific gravity equal to 2. What would be theoretical maximum dry unit weight corresponding to zero air voids at the optimum water content? 10 The following data on consistency limits are available for two soils A and B.8 kN/m3 and a water content of 15%. Sakthi Subramani A. / Civil R. voidratio (e).P.7.20 Two clay samples A and B have the following properties: Atterberg limits Clay A Clay B Liquid limit 44% 55% Plastic limit 29% 35% Natural water content 30% 50% BT.No. Determine the degree of saturation.67 gave a maximum dry unit weight of 17.

6 BT .4. (Sheet pile and weir).P. / Civil . (iv) More plastic Classify the soil as per IS classification system. PART-A (2 marks) 1 2 3 4 5 6 List out the methods of drawing flow net. What will be its coefficient of permeability? BT – 1.5 BT – 1 .1 13 14 15 16 17 BT. R. 8.2 – 2 BT. neutral stress and effective stress and give its relationship.SOILWATERAND WATER FLOW Soil water – static pressure in water . What is meant by capillary rise in soil and how it affects the stress level in soils? Say true or false and justify your answer: In fine-grained soils the capillary rise is less compared to coarse grained soils. State the assumptions in construction of flow net. Write down the methods available for determination of permeability in the laboratory? 7. State and explain Darcy’s law. What is meant by total stress. Number of flow channels =4 Calculate the discharge per metre length of the dam if the co-efficient of permeability of the dam material is3 x 10-5m/sec.indicate which soil is (i) Better foundation material on remoulding.1.Effective stress concepts in soils – capillary stress – Permeability measurement in the laboratory and field pumping in pumping out tests – factors influencing permeability of soils – Seepage – introduction to flow nets – Simple problems.P.3 BT. 9 What are the factors affectin g permeability? 10 What is quicksand? How would you calculate the hydraulic gradient required to create Quick sand conditions in a sample of sand? 11 Show that effective stress in soil mass is independent of variation in water table above the ground surface 12 For a homogeneous earth dam 52m high and 2m freeboard. 18 The coefficient of permeability of soil is found to be 1 x 10-5 m/s at a voidratio of 0. (iii) Better shear strength at plastic limit.2 BT – 4 -3 Write down the uses of Flow net.3 – 3 BT.2 Prepared by T. / Civil T.5 -1 BT – 5 .1 BT.1 BT. List the methods of finding field-permeability. Thenmozhi A. Differentiate seepage velocity from discharge velocity. a flow net was constructed and following results were obtained: Number of potential drops= 25. What are the different types of soil water? Define capillary rise and surface tension Define Capillarity and permeability. BT . Sakthi Subramani A.4 and the other factors remaining same.2 -4 BT– 3 .3 – 2 BT. If the void ratio is 0.2 – 3 BT. (ii) Better shear strength as function of water content. Do those soils have organic matter? UNIT 2.2 -1 BT.4. Banu chander A.1 – 4 BT. / Civil R.P.1.6.

BT – 1 2 (i) The falling head permeability test was conducted on a soil sample of 4cm diameter and 18cm length. In a constant head permeameter test. h2 and h3 thick. Also draw total stress diagram up to 10. the sand is saturated with capillary water. 20 Explain the terms: seepage pressure and flow net. the field determination of permeability BT – 1 The water table in a deposit of sand 8m thick is at a depth of 3m below the ground surface. neutral pressure and effective pressure over the depth of 8m.P.65. Assuming an average hydraulic gradient of 0. determine the coefficient of permeability. Above water table there is capillary rise up to ground surface. 4m. Hence plot the variation of total pressure. Distance between piezometer tappings = 15cm. what is its equivalent permeability in the horizontal and vertical directions? Derive the formulae used.1.40m in 20 minutes. The head fell from 1. / Civil R. / Civil . If the cross-sectional area of the stand pipe was 1cm2.P. Along with the coefficient of permeability of the individual strata.1 BT. k2 and k3 are the permeability’s of layers h1.00 m. the following observations were taken. 6m. effective and pore pressure at a depth of 20m below the bottom of a lake 6 m deep.6.62kN/m3. Also draw total stress diagram upto 10m. (4) (ii) Find the value of the effective stress at 2m. R. Describe in detail with neat sketches. Find (i) Discharge value and discharge velocities in each layer for horizontal flow and (ii) Hydraulic gradient and loss in head in each layer for vertical flow. 8m and 10m is a soil mass having s γ =21 KN/m3.19 If k1. Above water table there is capillary rise upto ground surface.2 PART-B (16marks) 1 Water table is 2m below ground surface.6. The bottom of lake consists of soft clay with a thickness of more than 20m. Banu chander A. (i) Write a short note on quick sand conditions in soil.P. BT. (ii) Compute the total. Above the water table. A stratified soil deposit is shown in Fig.3 in both horizontal and vertical seepage. Thenmozhi A. The average water content of the clay is 35% and specific gravity of the soil may be assumed to be 2. 3m and 8m BT -3 3 4 5 6 7 below the ground surface. Sakthi Subramani A. / Civil T.0m to 0. The bulk density of sand is 19. Determine the ratio of KH and KV. the laboratory determination of permeability using constant head method and falling head method.3 Prepared by T. BT – 1 BT – 2 BT – 2 BT. (12) Describe in detail with neat sketches. Water table is 2m below ground surface. Calculate the effective pressure at 1m.

8 9 10 difference of water levels in piezometers = 40cm. Explain briefly about the applications of flow net and (8) ii. / Civil .8m.66.Use of Newmarks influence chart –Components of settlement –– immediate and consolidation settlement – Terzaghi‟s one dimensional consolidation theory – computation of rate of settlement.4m.√t and log t methods– e-log p relationship . Calculate seepage velocity of water during the test.65. Assuming the top fine sand to be saturated by capillary water.6m thick.What will be the change in effective pressure at depth 3.The unit weight of clay may be assumed as 19.P.0m below the ground surface. 3. State the application of influence chart in soil? A Consolidating stratum takes two years for 50% consolidation. (8) The sub soil strata at a site consist of fine sand 1. What will be the ratio of average permeability in horizontal direction to that in the vertical direction for a soil deposit consisting of three horizontal layers.8and for coarse sand G=2. The water table is 1.P. Under the clay stratum lies a deposit of coarse sand extending to a considerable depth.3 Prepared by T.Factors influencing compression behaviour of soils PART–A (2 marks) 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 Define isobar.6 UNIT 3 – STRESS DISTRIBUTION AND SETTLEMENT Stress distribution . Write the Westergaard’s equation for the vertical stress for a point load. quantity of water collected = 500ml. BT – 4 BT. R. if the thickness and permeability of second layer are twice of those of the first and those of the third layer twice those of second? Derive the equation. Define primary and secondary consolidation. calculate the effective pressures at ground surface and at depths of 1. Assume for fine sand G=2. . Explain any four methods of obtaining flow nets.4 m and5. i. If the dry mass of the 15cm long sample is 486g and specific gravity of the solids is 2.P.32kN/m3.soil media – Boussinesq theory . if no capillary water is assumed to be present in the fine sand and its bulk unit weight is assumed to be16. Banu chander A.65. diameter of the test sample = 5cm.5m below the ground surface. / Civil T.8m thick overlying a stratum of clay1.5 BT. Thenmozhi A. e=0. List out the component of settlement in soil. Sakthi Subramani A. Find the time taken by the stratum for 90% consolidation and 100 % consolidation respectively BT-1-1 BT-2-1 BT.68kN/m3. / Civil R. Define the terms compression index and coefficient of compressibility. Discuss about the assumptions made in Terzaghi’s one dimensional consolidation theory? When a soil mass is said to be homogenous? What do you understand by the terms immediate settlement and compression. Name the two theories explaining the stress distribution on soil? Differentiate between coefficient of consolidation and degree of consolidation. duration of the test = 900sec.e=0. Determine the coefficient of permeability of the soil.5.

which may be considered to be strip load of considerable length. Draw the Newmark’s chart BT-4-1 BT – 5 BT. Banu chander A. Determine the intensity of vertical stress at a point. / Civil R. Thenmozhi A. What are the applications of Boussinessq’s equation? Compare Boussinessq’s and Westerguard analysis for stress distribution. (ii) directly below the edge of the footing and Prepared by T. Determine the maximum 3 4 5 6 7 Bt. What is the time required for the clay layer to reach 50% consolidation if the layer has double drainage instead of single drainage. What will be the vertical pressure at a point at a depth of 5m and at a radial distance of 2m from the axis of loading? Use Boussinesque analysis In a laboratory consolidometer test on a 20mm thick sample of saturated clay taken from a site.1 Bt-2 Bt-3 principal stress at 1. R. if the point lies (i) directly below the centre of the footing.2m below the surface and i) Directly under the line load and ii) At a distance 2m perpendicular to the line. What will be the vertical pressure at a point at a depth of 5m and at a radial distance of 2m from the axis of loading? Use Boussinesque analysis i)How will you determine pre-consolidation pressure?(6) ii) How will you determine coefficient of compression index (CC) from an oedomoter test? (10) The load from a continuous footing of width 2m. / Civil T. A concentrated point load of 200 KN acts at the ground surface. Identify the limitations of Terzaghi’s analysis in one dimensional consolidation theory. / Civil . How is consolidation different from compaction? Compare and differentiate geostatic stress and pre-consolidation pressure? Where would you use the effective stress analysis and where the total stress analysis? Draw a consolidation curve for normally consolidated and over consolidated clay.P. Estimate the time required for the clay layer of 5m thickness at the site for 50% compression if there is drainage only towards the top.5m depth below the footing.50% consolidation point was reached in10minutes. is 200 kN/m2.(8) A line load of100kN/m run extends to a long distance. Use Boussinesq’s theory.P.(8) 2 A concentrated point load of 200 KN acts at the ground surface. Sakthi Subramani A. Explain with a neat sketch the Terzhaghi’s one dimensional consolidation theory.13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 for the same drainage condition.6 Part –B 1 Explain the assumptions made by Boussinesque in stress distribution on soils. Find the intensity of vertical pressure at a depth of 10m below the ground surface and situated on the axis of the loading. Find the intensity of vertical pressure at a depth of 10m below the ground surface and situated on the axis of the loading.P.

If the clay layer from which the sample was obtained is 3m thick in field condition.3 BT-4-1 Prepared by T. (i)A layer of soft clay is 6m thick and lies under a newly constructed building.0kg/cm2. estimate the time it will take to consolidate 50% with double surface drainage and in both cases. below the 8 9 10 centre of ring foundation.P. Compute the settlement. Discuss about the application of UCC of clay soil? Why triaxial shear test is considered better than direct shear test? BT-1-1 BT-2-1 BT. R. The weight of sand overlying the clay layer produces a pressure of 2. / Civil .5. consolidation pressure is uniform A water tank is supported by a ring foundation having outer diameter of 10m and inner diameter of 7.taking µ= 0. direct shear – Triaxial compression. (8) (ii) Explain in detail the laboratory determination of co-efficient of consolidation.P.(iii) 0. Water content is 40% and specific gravity of grains is 2.(8) Unit 4 .5 Bt-6 the new construction increases the pressureby1. Thenmozhi A. using (i) Boussinesque analysis and (ii) Westergaard’s analysis . 4 5 What are the different types of shear test based on drainage conditions? Define Cohesion and stress path 6 7 Write down the Mohr’s-Coulomb failure envelope equation.SHEAR STRENGTH Shear strength of cohesive and cohesionless soils – Mohr – Coulomb failure theory – Measurement of shear strength.5m.6kg/cm2 and Bt-4 Bt. Banu chander A.8m away from the edge of the footing An undrained soil sample 30 cm thick got 50% consolidation in 20 minutes with drainage allowed at top and bottom in the laboratory.65. / Civil R. the ring foundation transmits uniform load intensity of 160 kN/m2. Sakthi Subramani A. UCC and Vane shear tests – Pore pressure parameters – cyclicDSXmobility – Liquefaction PART-A (2 marks) 1 What are the various methods of determination of shear strength in the laboratory? 2 3 Write down the coulomb’s expression for shear strength List out the advantages of direct shear test.P. What is the effect of pore pressure on shear strength of soil? 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 What is shear strength of soil? How will you find the shear strength of cohesionless soil? What is angle of internal friction? When is vane shear test adopted? Explain about the application of direct shear test. Compute the vertical stress induced at depth of 4 m. / Civil T. If the compression index is 0.

if it is tested under cell pressure of 200kN/m2. 0 Tangential pressure =16kN/m2. BT – 5 BT. Evaluate the angle made by failure plane with major principle plane using Mohr’s circle and strength envelope Sketch the failure envelope for drained triaxial test. Normal and shear stresses on the failure plane. 8 (i)By Mohr’s circle and compute the principal stresses and the direction of principal planes. Banu chander A. Write down a step by step procedure for determination of cohesion of a given clayey soil by conducting unconfined compression test. What the major principal stress would have been if (i) Φ = 30 0and (ii) Φ=00. Find Bt-3 (i) (ii) (iii) 7 Angle of shearing resistance of the soil. R. The following data were obtained in a direct sheartest.If for the same soil. Use either Mohr’s circle method or analytical method 5 A particular soil failed under a major principal stress of 300kN/m2 with a corresponding minor principal stress of 100kN/m2. was pressed into soft clay at the bottom Bt-4 Prepared by T. 6 A Cylindrical specimen of dry sand was tested in a triaxial test. (8) (ii)Compare the merits and demerits of triaxial compression test. The angle made by the plane with the minor principal plane. Normal pressure 20kN/m2. / Civil T. the minor principal stress had been 200kN/m2.P. Failure occurred under a cell pressure of1.15 16 17 18 19 20 Explain the effect of pore pressure on shear strength of soil? Explain the shear strength parameters? Explain the Mohr–Coulomb failure theory. (8) A vane. Cohesion = 8kN/m2. What would be the deviator stress and the major principal stress at failure for another identical specimen of sand. Angle of internal friction = 20 . 10 cm long and 8cm in diameter. / Civil . Sketch the Mohr’s circle for total and effective stresses for undrained triaxial test. (iv) The maximum shear stress on any plane in the specimen at the instant of failure.1 Bt-2 100kN/m2under the drained conditions. Sakthi Subramani A.2kg/cm2 and at a deviator stress of 4. A saturated specimen of cohesionlesss and was tested in triaxial compression and the sample failed at a deviator stressof482kN/m2 when the cell pressure was Bt. Find the effective angle of shearing resistance of sand.0kg/cm2.P. Give its advantages over other methods of finding shear strength of soil i)Write a brief critical note on unconfined compression test (ii)What are the advantages and disadvantages of triaxial compression test. / Civil R.P. Thenmozhi A.6 Part –B 1 2 3 4 Explain with neat sketches the procedure of conducting direct shear test. Represent the data.

7 Outline briefly about translational slides.slope protection measures PART–A (2 marks) 1 Define finite slope. Determine the value of c and Φ analytically. 9 Bt. / Civil R.Friction circle method – Use of stability number . the vane rotated rapidly so as to completely remould the soil.P. R. Torque was applied and gradually increasedto45 N-m when failure took place.infinite slopes – finite slopes – Total stress analysis for saturated clay – Fellenius method . Analyse the cohesion of the clay in the natural and remoulded states and also the value of the sensitivity. 8 Differentiate modes of failure of finite and infinite slope 9 Discuss about stability number. 6 Write down the expression for factor of safety of an infinites lope in case of cohesionless soil.5 Second specimen failed at a deviator stress of 1370 kN/m2 under a cell pressure of 400 kN/m2. BT-1-1 2 Define factor of safety and critical depth. Subsequently. Two identical soil specimens were tested in a triaxial apparatus. 11 What are the various methods of analysis of finite slopes? 12 Classify the Slope protection measures. Banu chander A. Obtain the relationship between the principal stresses in triaxial compression test using Mohr-Coulomb failure theory Bt-6 Unit 5–SLOPE STABILITY Slope failure mechanisms – Types . estimate the 10 shear stress at failure.P.3 Identify the different factors controlling selection of appropriate method of slope protection measures. 16 Explain the causes for slope failure? BT-4-1 Prepared by T. Sakthi Subramani A. 13 Discuss the application of Taylor’s stability number. Thenmozhi A. / Civil T. 5 State the two basic types of failure occurring in finite slopes. 10 Distinguish between finite slope and infinite slope. If the same soil is tested in a direct shear apparatus with a normal stress of 600kN/m2.of a borehole. There moulded soil was sheared at a torque of 18N-m.P. First specimen failed at a deviator stress of 770kN/m2 when the cell pressure was 2000kN/m2. 14 BT-2-1 BT. / Civil . BT-1-2 3 Write a short note on slope and slide BT-1-3 4 List out the slope protection methods. 15 Compare stability number and Taylor’s stability number.

/ Civil T. What will be the factor of safety if the canal is rapidly emptied completely? Prepared by T.The Bt. Explain Taylor’s stability number with its applications. total neutral force= 200kN.67.6 Part –B 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 An embankment of 10m high is inclined at 350 to the horizontal.5 Bt-6 slope of the banks is1in1. 18 How does tension crack influence stability analysis? 19 What is meant by ‘base failure’ ? When does it occur? 20 Sketch any one of the slope protection measures neatly. R. A canal is to be excavated to a depth of 6m below ground level through a soil having the following characteristics c=15kN/m2.1 Bt-2 Bt-3 Bt-4 Bt. Describe in detail with neat sketches the Bishop’s method of stability analysis. total tangential force = 420kN.Determine the factor of safety with respect to cohesion when the canal runs full. find the FOS with respect to shear strength. / Civil R.5 treating it as an infinite slope. Banu chander A. BT – 5 BT.P. Φ=20°. A stability analysis by method of slices gives the following forces: Total normal forces = 900 kN. / Civil . Solve for the FOS of a finite slope possessing both cohesion and friction(c . Discuss about the various methods of slope protection measures with neat sketches.ф) by method of slices.P. A slope of very large extent of soil with properties c’= 0 and ф= 32 0 is likely to be subjected to seepage parallel to the slope with water level at the surface. Sakthi Subramani A. Thenmozhi A. What are different types of slope failures? Discuss the various methods for improving the stability of slopes. For this angle of slope what will be the FOS if the water level were to come down well below the surface? The saturated unit weight of the soil is 20kN/m3. The soil has c= 20kN/m2 and ф = 150 Write in detail Swedish slip circle method of analysis of finite slopes.9and G=2. If the length of the failure arc is 23m.P. Determine the maximum angle of slope for a FOS is 1.17 Recommend an expression for FOS of an infinite slope in case of cohesionless soil. Analyse the stability of soil using friction circle method. e=0.