Microstructural analysis of sands with varying degrees of internal stability

Fonesca, J., Sim, W.W., Shire, T. and O'Sullivan, C. (2014) Microstructural analysis of sands with varying degrees of internal stability. Géotechnique, 64(5), pp. 405-411. (doi:10.1680/geot.13.T.014)

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Abstract

Internal erosion involves the migration of particles through a geotechnical structure. Internal erosion poses a significant hazard to embankment dams and flood embankments. The fundamental mechanisms operate at the particle scale and a thorough understanding of these mechanisms can inform the filter design and specification process and reduce the hazard that internal erosion is known to pose to many engineered embankment structures. Engineers have long acknowledged the importance of the grain scale interactions, but until recently, explanations of the mechanisms have been purely hypothetical, as direct observation of the internal structure of filters was not possible. Recent research has used the discrete-element method to establish a particle-scale basis for Kézdi's filter internal stability criterion. The discrete-element method can provide significant useful data on soil microstructure, so a discrete-element method model is inherently ideal. This study therefore examines a number of real sand samples with varying degrees of internal stability at the particle scale using high-resolution micro-computed tomography. The correlation between coordination number and internal stability is confirmed, with the coordination number values being significantly higher for the real material.

Item Type:Articles
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Shire, Dr Thomas
Authors: Fonesca, J., Sim, W.W., Shire, T., and O'Sullivan, C.
College/School:College of Science and Engineering > School of Engineering > Infrastructure and Environment
Journal Name:Géotechnique
Publisher:ICE Publishing
ISSN:0016-8505
ISSN (Online):1751-7656
Published Online:02 May 2014

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