You are on page 1of 29

# Lateral Earth Pressures

What is Lateral Earth Pressure?
Designing any retaining wall requires knowledge of lateral earth pressure, the pressure developed by the backfill. It is the force generated by the lateral earth pressure that constitutes a large part of the load that the wall must carry.

represents pressures that are “to the side” (horizontal) rather than vertical

Tie rod Anchor Sheet pile Cantilever retaining wall Braced excavation Anchored sheet pile . it is often necessary to prevent lateral soil movements.Lateral Support In geotechnical engineering.

Lateral Support We have to estimate the lateral soil pressures acting on these structures. Gravity Retaining wall Soil nailing Reinforced earth wall . to be able to design them.

geosynthetics .Lateral Support Reinforced earth walls are increasingly becoming popular.

Interlocking stretchers and headers filled with soil . Looks good.Lateral Support Crib walls have been used in Queensland. Good drainage & allow plant growth.

Categories of Lateral Earth Pressure .

in granular soils Wall moves away from soil Wall moves towards soil B smooth wall A Let’s look at the soil elements A and B during the wall movement.Active/Passive Earth Pressures . .

there is no lateral movement. v’ remains the same.in granular soils v’ = z v’ z h’ A Initially. h’ = K0 v’ = K0 z As the wall moves away from the soil. and h’ decreases till failure occurs. Active state .Active Earth Pressure .

Active Earth Pressure .  Initially (K0 state) Failure (Active state) v ’ active earth pressure  decreasing h’ .in granular soils As the wall moves away from the soil.

in granular soils   [h’]active v’ WJM Rankine (1820-1872)  Rankine’s coefficient of active earth pressure .Active Earth Pressure .

in granular soils  Failure plane is at 45 + /2 to horizontal 45 + /2 v ’ h’ A  [h’]active 90+ v’  .Active Earth Pressure .

v ’ z h’ A h ’ K0 state Active state wall movement .Active Earth Pressure . h’ decreases till failure occurs.in granular soils As the wall moves away from the soil.

Passive Earth Pressure Initially. .in granular soils As the wall moves towards the soil. Passive state . soil is in K0 state. and h’ increases till failure occurs.  v’ h’ B v’ remains the same.

 Initially (K0 state) Failure (Active state) passive earth pressure v ’ increasing h’  .Passive Earth Pressure .in granular soils As the wall moves towards the soil.

in granular soils  v’ [h’]passive  Rankine’s coefficient of passive earth pressure .Passive Earth Pressure  .

/2 .Passive Earth Pressure  Failure plane is at 45 .in granular soils v ’ h’ A  v’ 90+ [h’]passive  ./2 to horizontal 45 .

in granular soils As the wall moves towards the soil.Passive Earth Pressure .  v’ h’ B h ’ Passive state K0 state wall movement . h’ increases till failure occurs.

in granular soils [h’]active [h’]passive PA=0.5 KAH2 h H PP=0.Earth Pressure Distribution PA and PP are the resultant active and passive thrusts on the wall .5 KPh2 KPh KAH .

h’ Passive state Active state K0 state Wall movement (not to scale) .

. The resultant force is parallel to the backfill surface.Rankine’s Earth Pressure Theory assumes: There is no adhesion or friction between the wall and soil Lateral pressure is limited to vertical walls Failure (in the backfill) occurs as a sliding wedge along an assumed failure plane defined by ø. Lateral pressure varies linearly with depth and the resultant pressure is located one-third of the height (H) above the base of the wall.

Rankine’s Earth Pressure Theory Rankine’s Active earth pressure coefficient Rankine’s Passive earth pressure coefficient .

The Coulomb Theory Coulomb active earth pressure coefficient: Coulomb passive earth pressure coefficient: .

Lateral pressure is not limited to vertical walls The resultant force is not necessarily parallel to the backfill surface because of the soil-wall friction value δ.The Coulomb Theory is similar to Rankine except that: There is friction between the wall and soil and takes this into account by using a soil-wall friction angle of δ. . Note that δ ranges from ø/2 to 2ø/3 and δ = 2ø/3 is commonly used.

Retaining Walls .Applications Road Train .

Applications highway .Retaining Walls .

Applications High-rise building basement wall .Retaining Walls .

Gravity Retaining Walls cement mortar cobbles plain concrete or stone masonry They rely on their self weight to support the backfill .

fixed to the ground .Cantilever Retaining Walls Reinforced. smaller section than gravity walls They act like vertical cantilever.