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Intergrain contact density indices for granular mixes I: Framework

S. Thevanayagam

Dept. of Civil, Struct. and Envir. Eng., State University of New York, Buffalo, NY 14260, USA

Abstract: Mechanical behavior such as stress-strain response, shear strength, resistance to liquefaction, modulus, and shear wave velocity of granular mixes containing coarse and fine grains is dependent on intergrain contact density of the soil. The global void ratio e is a poor index of contact density for such soils. The contact density depends on void ratio, fine grain content (CF), size disparity between particles, and gradation among other factors. A simple analysis of a two-sized particle system with large size disparity is used to develop an understanding of the effects of CF , e, and gradation of coarse and fine grained soils in the soil mix on intergrain contact density. An equivalent intergranular void ratio (ec)eq is introduced as a useful intergrain contact density for soils at fines content of less than a threshold value CFth. Beyond this value, an equivalent interfine void ratio  (ef)eq is introduced as a primary intergrain contact density index. At higher values of CF beyond a limiting value of fine grains content CFL, an interfine void ratio ef is introduced as the primary contact density index. Relevant equivalent relative density indices (Drc)eq and (Drf)eqare also presented. Experimental data show that these new indices correlate well with steady state strength, liquefaction resistance, and shear wave velocities of sands, silty sands, sandy silts, and gravelly sand mixes.

Keywords: Sand; silt; silty sand; sandy silt; cyclic strength; shear wave velocity; intergrain contact density

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Copyright 2009 IEM. Journal of Earthquake Engineering and Engineering Vibration. All Rights Reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, scanning or otherwise, except as described below, without written permission from the Publisher. Copying of articles is not permitted except for personal and internal use, to the extent permitted by national copyright law, or under the terms of a license issued by the National Reproduction Rights Organization of China.