Earth is almost never at the desired elevation at the intended location of a structure, and even if it was the case, almost always modifications must be done, to serve as a foundation base material that is capable of supporting the loads and at the same time settling only within tolerable limits. Therefore, earthwork operations […]

Rock Mechanics

Just like all the subjects we covered for soil mechanics deal with soil properties, rock mechanics deal with the properties of rocks, in order to utilize them as foundations for our structures, and the same principles apply for determination of those properties, with some minor modifications as required. As in soils, the strength of rock […]

Groundwater Flow nets

Seepage within a soil medium can be shown by flow nets: Groundwater 2a In the figure above we show an seepage flow condition below a dam. The total head anywhere in the water body at the left of the dam is 14m and in the water body at the right side of the dam is […]

Water Head, Hydraulic Gradient, Permeability

Water Head: Since we are explaining subtitle of a subtitle right now, this may seem like a detailed subject in soil mechanics at first… But actually the water head is a very important concept for water resources engineering, one of the five main branches of civil engineering, which we mentioned before briefly and will introduce […]

Geotechnical Reports

Geotechnical reports show the site soil, rock and groundwater conditions to be used for designing foundations of all types of structures. They are prepared for each project, based on data obtained from subsurface investigation and soil testing and measurement, as discussed in the preceeding two subsections above plus other sources. It is very important to […]

Subsurface Investigation

In order to design the foundation of structures, we must have good understanding of the soil conditions. The first step to this is to perform subsurface investigation. The most reliable and preferred way for this, is to see the actual soil, by taking samples. This can be done by drilling boreholes in the ground. The […]

Critical State of Soil

This is a relatively new (in comparison to many decades old of soil mechanics theories) but very useful concept in soil mechanics. It is a topic that is analysed in advanced soil mechanics courses only, in masters level classes, but it doesn’t prevent us from at least describing it, as it is good to know […]

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