Estimation of the small strain stiffness of glacial till using geophysical methods and barometric loading response

Ruth Harley, Paolo Bergamo, David Hughes, Shane Donohue, Laura Carse, Lee Barbour

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Stiffness values in geotechnical structures can range over many orders of magnitude for relatively small operational strains. The typical strain levels where soil stiffness changes most dramatically is in the range 0.01-0.1%, however soils do not exhibit linear stress-strain behaviour at small strains. Knowledge of the in situ stiffness at small strain is important in geotechnical numerical modelling and design. The stress-strain regime of cut slopes is complex, as we have different principle stress directions at different positions along the potential failure plane. For example, loading may be primarily in extension near the toe of the slope, while compressive loading is predominant at the crest of a slope. Cuttings in heavily overconsolidated clays are known to be susceptible to progressive failure and subsequent strain softening, in which progressive yielding propagates from the toe towards the crest of the slope over time. In order to gain a better understanding of the rate of softening it would be advantageous to measure changes in small strain stiffness in the field.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 23 Sep 2015
EventGeoQuebec 2015, 68th Canadian Geotechnical Conference - Quebec, Quebec City, Canada
Duration: 20 Sep 201523 Sep 2015


ConferenceGeoQuebec 2015, 68th Canadian Geotechnical Conference
CityQuebec City


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