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A review of factors affecting undrained strength of fine-grained soils at consistency limits.

Nagaraj, H.B; Muguda, S


H.B Nagaraj


Estimation of remoulded undrained shear strength of fine-grained soils over a wide range of water content encountered in civil engineering practice is very essential for geotechnical design. Engineers predict the strength through simple index properties, namely consistency limits, rather than using strength evaluated using poor quality soil samples. Though shear strength at two characteristic water contents of practical significance, namely, liquid and plastic limit has found to vary quite significantly, for convenience, strength at these limits has been assumed to be unique. Since, liquid and plastic limit of any soil are nothing but water holding capacity at different states of consistency, undrained strength for different soils having varying liquid limit or plastic limit cannot be expected to have a unique value. In addition to this, recent findings have also brought out the fact that mobilization of strength of soils depends on clay mineralogy and particle gradation. Hence, considering un-drained strength of soils to be unique at any consistency limits of soil is not correct. A critical re-examination of factors contributing to the strength and reasons for its non-uniqueness is presented in this paper based on review of data from various well cited articles reported in the literature.


Nagaraj, H., & Muguda, S. (2019). A review of factors affecting undrained strength of fine-grained soils at consistency limits.

Conference Name The XVII European Conference on Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering
Conference Location Reykjavik Iceland
Publication Date 2019
Deposit Date Feb 13, 2020
Keywords Clays; consistency limits; fine-grained soils; plasticity; undrained strength.
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