Effects of strain rates on the undrained shear strength of kaolin

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In recent times, interest in dynamically installed foundation systems for deep-sea construction has increased; however, these foundation systems are still under development and need quantification of various soil parameters with different perspectives. For the design of dynamically installed foundations, it is essential to assess the strain-rate effect on very soft soils. The T-bar has been widely used to characterize soft offshore sediments, such as silt and clay, and there is extensive existing literature on the interpretation of test results. Strain-rate dependence has not previously been fully examined for T-bar tests in very soft clay at very high rates of penetration. This paper examines this aspect using a physical model test. A 65-cm-thick kaolin clay bed was formed using vacuum consolidation. A T-bar was driven into the clay bed at rates that varied from 0.1 cm/s to 60 cm/s. The tests revealed that the resistance factor increased by 9 % for every 10-fold increase in the penetration rate for the material tested in this research.

Publication Title, e.g., Journal

Geotechnical Testing Journal