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Course, academic year 2022/2023
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Soil mechanics I - MG451P55E
Title: Soil mechanics I
Guaranteed by: Institute of Hydrogeology, Engineering Geology and Applied Geophysics (31-450)
Faculty: Faculty of Science
Actual: from 2022 to 2022
Semester: winter
E-Credits: 7
Examination process: winter s.:combined
Hours per week, examination: winter s.:2/3, C+Ex [HT]
Capacity: unlimited
Min. number of students: unlimited
Virtual mobility / capacity: yes / unlimited
Key competences: 4EU+ Flagship 4
State of the course: taught
Language: English
Explanation: Please join the virtual classroom following the link:
Additional information:
Note: enabled for web enrollment
Guarantor: Gianvito Scaringi, Dr., Ph.D.
Teacher(s): Gianvito Scaringi, Dr., Ph.D.
Annotation -
Last update: Gianvito Scaringi, Dr., Ph.D. (14.04.2022)
The course provides an introduction to soil mechanics and geotechnical engineering. We will discover the basic concepts of soil characterisation, together with the principles governing the mechanical and hydraulic behaviours of soil. Central to the course will be the understanding of Terzaghi’s principle of effective stresses, the theory of consolidation, and the strength envelopes. The course comprises a number of tutorials and exercises.
Literature -
Last update: Gianvito Scaringi, Dr., Ph.D. (14.04.2022)

Handouts, additional material, and references will be provided during the course.

Requirements to the exam -
Last update: Gianvito Scaringi, Dr., Ph.D. (14.04.2022)

A combination of a written final test and/or oral exam will be considered for the final evaluation, also accounting for the content and time compliance of the solved exercises delivered during the course. The exact form of the examination will be agreed with the students during the course.

Syllabus -
Last update: Gianvito Scaringi, Dr., Ph.D. (14.04.2022)

- Description and characterisation of soils: unit weights, porosity and void ratio, water content and degree of saturation, grain size distribution, consistency limits, mineralogical and grain size-based soil classifications.
- Fundamentals of mechanics: stress and strain concepts, Mohr’s circles, Young’s modulus, Poisson’s number, basic material behaviours (elasticity, plasticity, linear and nonlinear behaviours).
- Water in soil and effective stresses: different forms of water in soil, capillarity, principle of effective stresses, hydrostatic pressure, stress profiles in the ground, water flow and hydraulic conductivity, critical hydraulic gradient, theory of consolidation, drained and undrained loads.
- Compressibility and volume changes: uniaxial, isotropic and oedometric compressions, compressibility parameters and state lines, normally consolidated and overconsolidated soils, soil stress history, experimental determination of volume change behaviours, settlements, pressure coefficient at rest, consolidation factor, volumetric creep, swelling and swelling pressure, examples, and case studies.
- Strength: stress-strain diagram, Mohr-Coulomb strength envelope, dilatancy, peak strength, critical state strength, critical state, strength envelope shapes, true and apparent cohesion, residual strength. Use of peak, critical, and residual strength in practice, their determination in laboratory: direct and ring shear boxes, triaxial devices, angle of repose method; stress paths and their use, undrained strength, its determination, and use.
- Experimental soil mechanics: field geotechnical investigations and laboratory tests, planning and executing a geotechnical campaign, soil sampling, laboratory determinations.
- Tutorials and exercises for which the students are expected to prepare individual reports that will count towards the final evaluation. The exact number and content of the tutorials and exercises will be agreed during the course.

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