The velocity of shear waves in saturated soil

Whalley, W. R.; Jenkins, M. and Attenborough, K. (2011). The velocity of shear waves in saturated soil. Soil Science Society of America Journal, 75(5) pp. 1652–1657.



The velocities of shear waves in three different soils were measured as a function of consolidation using a Bishop and Wesley triaxial cell. We considered the soil deforming plastically on the normal consolidation line as well as elastic deformation on the rebound curve. In both cases, the soils were saturated and subjected to an isotropic stress environment. The relationships between the velocity of a shear wave and effective stress were similar for the sand and silt soils, but for clay soils the velocity of a shear wave was smaller, showing a soil type dependency. Additionally there was no unique relationship between shear wave velocity and effective stress for soils during plastic deformation (on the normal consolidation line) and elastic deformation (on the rebound elastic curve). By combining empirical relationships between shear wave velocity as a function of void ratio and effective stress with the normal consolidation curve, we were able to collapse the data from three soils onto a common curve irrespective of whether the soil was subjected to elastic or plastic deformations.

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