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# Compiled by: Prof.B.S.Chawhan M.Tech(Geo-Tech Engg), Asst.Professor,CED,Government.

## Engineering College,Haveri-581110(12/4/2011-Till date)

UNIT-05
SHEAR STRENGTH OF SOIL
Concept of Shear Strength:
The shear strength of soil is the resistance to deformation by continuous shear displacement of soil particles or on mass upon the
action of a shear stress.
The failure conditions for a soil may be expressed in terms of limiting shear stress, called shear strength or a function of the principal
stresses.
The shearing resistance of a soil is constituted basically of the following components. Page |
1.The structural resistance to displacement of the soil because of the interlocking of the particles. 1
2.The functional resistance to translocation b/n the individual soil particles at their contact points.
3.Cohesion or adhesion between the face of the soil particles.
Shear Strength of Soil:
The shear strength of a soil is its maximum resistance to shearing stresses.
It is usually taken to be equal to the shear stress at failure on the failure plane. It is represented as composed of:
i.Angle of internal friction (Φ).
ii.Cohesion (C).
i.Angle of internal friction (Φ).
The resistance due to interlocking of particles and friction between individual particles at their contact points is called internal friction
(Φ).
ii.Cohesion (C).
The resistance due to interlocking particles forces which tend to hold the particles together in a soil mass.
The shear strength τf=C+σtanΦ (1) is given by Coulomb’s.
Where, σ=total normal stress on the failure plane.
C= Cohesion
Φ=angle of internal friction.
Equation (1) is also referred to define the Coulomb-Mohr’s shear strength theory for soils.
Graphically it is represented by a straight line as shown in below figure;

τf=C+σtanΦ
Shear strength ,τ in kg/cm2

Φ in degree
d d

C in kg/cm2

## Normal stress in kg/cm2, σ

Compiled by: Prof.B.S.Chawhan M.Tech(Geo-Tech Engg), Asst.Professor,CED,Government.Engineering College,Haveri-581110(12/4/2011-Till date)
Theoretical Consideration:
Mohr’s Stress Circles;

σy
τxy
+
τyx
α +σ Page |
σ -σ
2
σx

τ σx
τyx -

τyx
σy

## a. Soil element b. Sign convention

Principal Stress:
Principal stresses are the normal or perpendicular stress in the plane without shear stress is referred as Principal stress.
Principal Plane:
Thus in which the principal stresses will be acting are called principal plane.

τmax
Mohr’s circle

D f(σ,τ)

α 2α X

σ2 B A
σx
σy
σ1

Procedure:
1.Given normal stress σx and σy and shear stress τ, required to find normal stresses σ1 and σ2.
2.Consider axis OX, on OX mark a point A from O representing OA=σy to some scale.
3.Similarly mark B, OB= σx (If σx=-ve the B will on lef side on O).
4.From A draw a perpendicular AD representing shear stress τ.
5.Mark the centre C of AB join CD.
6.With CD as radius draw a circle (Mohr’s Circle). Cutting the axis @ P and Q then OP=σ1 and OQ= σ2. i.e normal stress.
Formula:
a.Normal stress, σ= σy+ σx +( σy- σx)cos2α+τxysin2α (2)
2 2
b.Shear stress, τ=( σy- σx)sin2α-τxycos2α (3)
2
Compiled by: Prof.B.S.Chawhan M.Tech(Geo-Tech Engg), Asst.Professor,CED,Government.Engineering College,Haveri-581110(12/4/2011-Till date)
σ1
Y
Minor Principal Plane
N Plane of shear

τ G
σ
Failure envelope f(σ,τ) Page |
σ3 σ3 3
X Major Principal Plane
X

O
X
M σ2

σ1 σ1
Mohr’s Strength Theory:
The Mohr’s strength theory is explained below:
i.The ultimate strength of a material is determined by the stress in the planes of slip.
ii.The failure of a material is essentially by shear but the critical shear is governed by the normal stress on the potential failure plane
and the properties of the material.
iii.In a three dimensional stress system, the magnitude of the intermediate principal stress has no effect on the strength of a material, or
in other words, the failure criteria is independent of the intermediate principal stress.
On any plane the shear stress τ is given by:
τ=σtanβ (4).
Where, σ=nrmal stress
Β=angle of obliquity.
Now see the following figure
Shear strength ,τ in kg/cm2

τ Mohr’s Circles

O X
σ3

## Fig. Mohr’s failure envelope.

The shear strength on the failure plane has then its limiting value τf= σtanβ (5).
Since a failure envelope defines the shear stress at failure as a function of normal stress, failure can occur only hen the Mohr’s circle
for a stress system touches the failure envelope. Such a circle II in above figure is known as the limiting circle, corresponding to
Compiled by: Prof.B.S.Chawhan M.Tech(Geo-Tech Engg), Asst.Professor,CED,Government.Engineering College,Haveri-581110(12/4/2011-Till date)
failure. No failure cn occure under a stress condition represented by I in above figure. On the other hand, it is not possible to keep a
material under the stress condition represented by circle III, because prior to the development of such a stress condition the material
would have already failed.
The angle QFD is 2θf. from the triangle OQF;
2θf=90+Φ
∴ θf=45+ Φ/2 (6)
The angle θf defines the orientation of the failure plane PQ with respect to the major principal plane.
Page |
Mohr’s Coulomb failure theory: 4
Following are the essential point of Mohr’s strength theory:
1.Material fails essentially by shear. The critical shear stress causing failure depends upon the properties of the materials as well as on
normal stress on the failure plane.
2.The ultimate strength of the material is determined by the stresses in the potential failure plane (on plane of shear).
3.When the material is subjected to three dimensional principal stresses (i.e. σ1,σ2,σ3) the intermediate principal stress does not have
any influence on the strength of material.
Shear strength, in kg/cm2, τ

Failure envelope

f(σ,τ)
Shear strength ,τ in kg/cm2

Φ in degree

τ=C+σtanΦ

C in kg/cm2

## Normal stress, σ in kg/cm2

τ=C+σtanΦ , called Mohr’s Coulomb equation (7)
where,C=Cohesion in kg/cm2, Φ=Angle of shearing resistance in degree.

Y
Shear strength ,τ in kg/cm2

## Shear strength ,τ in kg/cm2

Φ=0
C=0

C in kg/cm2
Φ in degree X
0
Normal stress,σ in kg/cm2 Normal stress in kg/cm2
Fig.Cohesionless soil.e.g.,Sand or gravel type of soil. Fig. Purely Cohesive soil.e.g.,Clay or Murrum type of soil.
Compiled by: Prof.B.S.Chawhan M.Tech(Geo-Tech Engg), Asst.Professor,CED,Government.Engineering College,Haveri-581110(12/4/2011-Till date)

τ=C+σtanΦ
Shear strength ,τ in kg/cm2

Φ in degree

Page |
C in kg/cm2 5

## Normal stress,σ in kg/cm2

Fig.C-Φ type of soil.i.e., Homogeneous type of soil
Effective Principal Stress:

τ=C+σtanΦ
Shear strength ,τf in kg/cm2

ΦI in degree

CI in kg/cm2

## Normal stress,σI in kg/cm2

τ=C+σtanΦ
τ=CI+σItanΦI------------------------------------- -(8)
τf=CI+(σ-u)tanΦI----------------( σ =σI+u)
where,
CI=Effective cohesion intercept.
ΦI=Effective angle of shearing resistance
Cu=C+ σtanΦu---------------------------------------- (9)
Where, Cu=Apparent cohesion
The normal stress σ and shear stress τ on any plane inclined at an angle α to the major principal plane (MPP) can be expressed interms
of effective major principal stress σI and effective minor principal stress σ3I as shown in figure below.

σI1

N τ=C+σtanΦ
σ τ
Shear strength ,τf in

Φ in degree

σI3 σI3
C in kg/cm2

## M Normal stress,σ in kg/cm2

σI1
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## σI=σ1I+σ3I+ σ1I-σ3Icos2α-------------------------- (10)

2 2
τ= σ1I-σ3Isin2α------------------------------------- (11)
2
Substituting the values of σI in eqn (8)
Page |
τf =C+[σ1I+σ3I+ σ1I-σ3I]tanΦI-------------------------- (10) 6
2 2
The normal dangerous plane i.e., the plane on which failure thake place is the one which the difference τf-τ between the strength and
the shear stress is minimum. Therefore,
i.e., τf-τ=C+tanΦI[σ1I+σ3I+ σ1I-σ3Icos2α]-[ σ1I-σ3I]sin2α
2 2 2
Differentiate this with respect to α and equating to 0.
Cot2 α=cot9(90+ΦI)
2 α=90+ΦI
α=45+ΦI/2
i.e., αf=45+ΦI/2
where,αf=failure plane------(exterior angle=sum of two interior angle)
C and Φ are the properties of soil.

τ=CI+σtanΦI

Mohr’s circle
Failure envelope or failure plane

τ ΦI

CI αf 2αf

σI3 A C B σ

σI1
Fig. Coulomb-Mohr’s strength envelope.

2 α=90+ΦI
α=45+ΦI/2
For centre of circle C= σ1I-σ3I, then locate C point.From σ3 point AC as radious
2
Factors affecting shear strength of soils:
a. For Cohesionless soils
1. Shape of Particles-The shearing strength of sands with angular particles having sharp edges is greater than with rounded particles,
other parameters being identical.
2. Gradation-A well-graded sand exhibits greater shear strength than a uniform sand.
3. Denseness-The degree of interlocking increases with an increase in density. Consequently, the greater the denseness, the greater the
strength. The value of φ ′ is related to the relative density (Dr) as φ ′ = 26 + 0.2 D r . However, the ultimate value of φ ′ is not
0

affected by denseness.
4. Confining pressure- The shear strength increases with an increase in confining pressure. However, for the range of pressure in the
Compiled by: Prof.B.S.Chawhan M.Tech(Geo-Tech Engg), Asst.Professor,CED,Government.Engineering College,Haveri-581110(12/4/2011-Till date)
common field problems, the effect of confining pressure on the angle of shearing resistance is not significant.
5. Deviator stress- The angle of φ ′ decreases under very high stresses. As the maximum deviator stress is increased from 500 to
5000kN/m2, the value of φ ′ decreases by about 10%. This is due to the crushing of particles.
6. Intermediate principle stress-The intermediate preinciple stress affects the shear strength to a small extent. The friction angle for
dense sands in the plane strain case is about 20 to 40 greater than that obtained from a standard triaxial test. However, for loose sand,
there is practically no difference in the two values.
7. Loading- The angle of shearing resistance of sand is independent of the rate of loading. The increase in the value of φ ′ from the Page |
slowest to the fastest possible rate of loading is only about 1 to 2%. 7
The angle of shearing resistance in loading is approximately equal to that in unloading.
8. Vibrations and Repeated loading- Repeated loading can cause significant changes. A stress much smaller than the static failure
stress if repeated a large number of times can cause a very large strain and hence the failure.
9. Type of minerals- If the sand contains mica, it will have a large void ratio and a lower value of φ ′ . However, it makes no
difference whether the sand is composed of quartz or feldspar minerals.
10. Capillary moisture- The sand may have apparent cohesion due to capillary moisture. The apparent cohesion is destroyed as soon
as the sand becomes saturated.
A person can easily walk on damp sand near the sea beach it possesses strength due to capillary moisture. On the same sand
in saturated conditions, it becomes difficult to walk as the capillary action is destroyed.
Table-A. Gives the representative values of φ ′ for different type of cohesionless soils.
Table-A. Representative values of φ′ for Sands and Silts
Sl.No Soil φ′
1. Sand, round grains, uniform 270 to 340
2. Sand, angular, well-graded 330 to 450
3. Sandy gravels 350 to 500
4. Silt sand 270 to340
5. Inorganic silt 270 to 350

Not- Smaller values are for loose conditions and larger values are for dense conditions.
b. For Cohesive soils
1. Structure of clay- The clay exhibits a definite structure. Even a normally-consolidated clay exhibits a small peak due to structural
strength. In case of over-consolidated clays, the structural strength is predominant.
2. Clay content- The ultimate friction angle φ ′ of the cohesive soil depends upon the clay content. As ultimate condition increases
with an increase in clay content, because the clay particles do not reach a fully oriented face-to-face alignment at peak.
3. Drainage conditions- As the cohesive soils have low permeability, the shear strength will depend whether it is in drained condition
or in undrained conditions. The cohesive soils have very low strength just after the application of the load when undrained
conditions exist.
4. Rate of strain-In the case of normally consolidated clays, the effect of rate of strain upon the angle of shearing resistance is
relatively small. The value of φ ′ is found to increase with a decrease in rate of strain. In the case of over-consolidated clays, some
of the shear strength is always lost when the rate of strain is decreased.
5. Intermediate principle stress- The values of C ′ and φ ′ are affected very little by the magnitude of the intermediate principle
stress.
6. Repeated loading-For clays tested at constant water content, the shear strength is increased due to a large number of repetitions of
the stress. However, if the stress intensities are too high, the cumulative deformations may result in failure.
7. Confining pressure- The shear strength of clays increases with an increase in the confining pressure, provided there is enough
available for the pore water pressure to dissipate.
8. Plasticity index- The value of φ ′ decreases with an increase in plasticity index of the clay. The following relation is commonly
used.
sin φ ′ = 0.814 − 0.234 log 10 I p
9. Stress history- The values of strength parameters depend upon the stress history.
10. Disturbance- The shear strength of disturbed sample is less than that of the undisturbed samples.
Table-B. Gives the representative values of Cu for different types of cohesive soils for undrained conditions.
Compiled by: Prof.B.S.Chawhan M.Tech(Geo-Tech Engg), Asst.Professor,CED,Government.Engineering College,Haveri-581110(12/4/2011-Till date)

## Table-B. Representative Values of Cu for clay

Sl.No Soil Cohesion Cu (kN/m2)
01. Very soft clay <12
02. Soft to medium clay 12-25
03. Stiff clay 50-100
04. Very stiff 100-200
05. Hard >200 Page |
Sensitivity and Thixotropy of clay.: 8
The unconfined compression strength is greatly reduced when the soils are tested after remolding without any change in the
moisture content. This property of clay soils is called sensitivity.
A clay soil after remolding, a soil specimen is kept in an undisturbed state(that is, without any change in the moisture content), it
will continue to gain strength with time. This phenomenon is referred to as thixotropy.
The degree of sensitivity may be defined as the ratio of the unconfined compression strength in an undisturbed state to that in a
remolded state, or St=qu(undisturbed)/qu(remolded). The sensitivity ratio of most clays ranges from 1 to8.
Measurement of shear parameters or 4 shear strength method.
a. Direct shear strength test. i.e., Cohesion type soil.
b. Triaxial test. i.e., Cohesive type of soil.
c. Unconfined Compression test. i.e., saturated soil.
d. vane shear test. i.e., Very soft type of soil.
Again depending upon the drainage condition, therefore types of shear test have been adopted;
i.Undrained or Quick test.
ii. Consolidated undrained test.
iii. a drained test.
i.Undrained Test:
No drainage is permitted hence there is no dissipation of pore pressure during the entire test. This test is used for foundation
on clay soils, and slopes and cuts.
ii. The drained Test:
The drainage is permitted throught the test during the application of both normal and shear stress. So that full consolidation
accurse and access pore pressure is setup at any stage of the test. The purpose of this test is to simulate field conditions as for as
possible.
iii. Consolidated Undrained Test:
In consolidated undrained test, the drainage is permitted under the initially applied normal stress only and full primary
consolidation is allowed to take place. No drainage is allowed afterwards. This test is used for due to changes in moisture content are
expected to take place due to consolidation before the soil is fully loaded.
a. DIRECT SHEAR TEST:
This test is used for determination of angle of shearing resistance and Cohesion for a given soil sample.
In direct shear test the sample is sheared along a horizontal plane. This indicates that the failure plane is horizontal. The normal stress
σ on this plane is the external vertical load divided by the area of the sample. The shear at failure is the external lateral load divided by
the area of sample.
Normal force

Soil
Shear force

Foundation material

## Fig. Direct shear test to determine interface friction angle.

Compiled by: Prof.B.S.Chawhan M.Tech(Geo-Tech Engg), Asst.Professor,CED,Government.Engineering College,Haveri-581110(12/4/2011-Till date)

σ3 σ1 F

M N Page |
9

σ3
F σ1

Failure envelope

P1 Mohr’s circle
τ=c+σtanΦ P=Pole

## τ Minor principal plane

Φ
Major principal plane
C αf 2αf
α
O X
σ3 D C σ1 σ

The point P1 on the stress diagram represents the stress condition on the failure plane. The co-ordinates of the point are,
The normal stress=σ, The shear stress=τ=s.
If it is assumed that the Mohr’s envelope is a straight line through the origin of stress (for cohesionless soil or normally consolidated
clays0, it fallows that the maximum obliquity δm occurs on the failure plane and δm=Φ. Therefore the line op1must be a tangent to the
Mohr’s Circle. AP is called Minor Principal Plane. BP is called Major Principal Plane.

Y Y

## Peak value, a Dense sand Dense sand

Dense sand
Φ

τ Loose sand Φ
τ τ
Loose sand
Loose sand
X X
σ σ σ
a. σ v/s τ b. Volume change c. σ v/s τ
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## Limitations of Direct Shear Box test:

1. The stress conditions are complex primarily because of the non-uniform distribution of normal and shear
stress on the plane.
2. There is virtually no control of the drainage of the soil specimen as the water content of a saturated soil
changes rapidly with stress.
3. The area of the sliding surface at failure will be less than the original area of the soil specimen and strictly
speaking, this should be accounted for. Page |
4. The ridges of the metal gratings embedded on the top and bottom of the specimen, causes distortion of the 10
specimen to same degree.
5. The effect of lateral restraint by the side walls of the shear box is likely to affect the results.
6. The failure plane is predetermined and this may not be the weakest plane. In fact, this is the most important
limitation of the direct shear test.
Advantage and disadvantage of Direct shear box test:
1. The direct shear test is simple test compared to the triaxial test.
2. The thickness of the soil sample small, quick drainage and hence rapid dissipation of pore pressure is
possible.
3. This test is used for determine to co-ordinate of normal stress σ and shear stress τ.
1. The failure plane is determined. Therefore the specimen is not allowed to fail along the weakest plane.
2. Shear displacement causes reduction in area under shear. Corrected area should be used in computing normal
and shear stress.
3. The side walls of the shear box can cause lateral restraint on the edges of the specimen.
4. There is little control on drainage of pore water as compared with triaxial compression test.
B.Triaxial Shear test:
In triaxial compression test, a specimen of soil is subjected to three principal compressive stresses at right angle to one another, and
the specimen is failed in shear by increasing or sometimes by decreasing one of the stresses.
σI1=Axial stress

σI1
σI2= σI3

σ τ

## Lateral pressure σI3 σI3

σI3 σI3

σI2= σI3

σI1

σI1=Axial stress
Fig. Stress acting on a soil specimen in triaxial compression test.
The specimen is cylindrical in shape and the lateral compressive stresses are applied by a fluid under pressure, which act on all sides
of the specimen. To fail the specimen, additional vertical stress is applied axially on top of the specimen. Under these conditions the
vertical axial stress is the major principal stress σ1,and the intermediate and minor principal stresses (σ2
and σ3 respectively) are both equal to the confining fluid pressure. The above figure shows the stresses acting on a soil specimen in the
triaxial compression test.
Compiled by: Prof.B.S.Chawhan M.Tech(Geo-Tech Engg), Asst.Professor,CED,Government.Engineering College,Haveri-581110(12/4/2011-Till date)
This test is used for cohesive and no-cohesive soils to determine the deviator stress,
σd= σ1- σ3-------------( σd=Diviator stress, σ1=Vertical stress, σ3=Pore pressure)
σ1, applying some values and σ3=5,10,15kg/cm2
therefore, σd= σ1- σ3, Now plot the graph.
Y Failure envelope,τf=C+σtanΦ

Page |
Φ Mohr’s circles
11
τ
C
I II III
O X
σ3 σ3 σ3 σ1 σ1 σ1 σ

## Types of failure of a Triaxial Compression test specimen:

A triaxial compression test specimen may exhibits a particular pattern or shape as follows to reached, depending upon the nature of the
soil and its conditions, as shown in below figures.

## a.Brittle failure b.Semi-plastic failure c.Plastic failure

The first type is a brittle failure with well-defined shear plane, the second type is semi-plastic failure showing shear cones and some
lateral bulging, and the third type is plastic failure with will-expressed lateral bulging.
In the case of plastic failure, the strain goes on increasing slowly at a reduced rate with increasing stress, with no specific stage to pin-
point failure. In such a case, failure is assumed to have taken place when the strain reaches an arbitrary value such as 20%.
Merits and Demerits of Triaxial Tests:
Merits:
The following advantages of triaxial compression test are as follows;
1. There is a complete control over the drainage of specimen and all the three types of shear can be performed
on all types of soils.
2. Precise measurement of pore pressure and volume changes can be made during the test.
3. There is relatively uniform stress distribution on the failure plane and the specimen is free to fail on the
weakest surface.
4. Complete state of stress within the specimen is statically determinate at all stages of the test.
5. The triaxial test apparatus is more adoptable to special requirement and is best suited for research purposes.
Demerits:
1. The chief demerits is that the apparatus is elaborate.
2. Drained tests take a very long time (compare shear box).
3. Rigidity and friction of the end caps restrict the development of uniform stress conditions within the entire specimen.
4. A large strain, corrections for the changes in area of specimen can be made only approximately.
C.Unconfined Compression Test:
The unconfined compression test is a special case of triaxial compression test in which σ2= σ3=0. The cell pressure in the triaxial
cell is also called the confining pressure. Due to the absence of such a confining pressure, the uniaxial test is called the unconfined
compression test. The cylindrical specimen of soil is subjected to major principal stress σ1 till the specimen fails due to shearing along
a critical plane of failure.
Compiled by: Prof.B.S.Chawhan M.Tech(Geo-Tech Engg), Asst.Professor,CED,Government.Engineering College,Haveri-581110(12/4/2011-Till date)
Following figure shows the stress conditions, at failure, in the unconfined compression test which is essentially an undrained test (if it
is assumed that moisture is lost from the specimen during the test). Since σ3=0, the Mohr’s circle passes through the origin which is
also the pole.

σ1=Cu

Y Page |
N Failure plane 12
τ Failure envelope
σ τ
F Φu=0

Mohr’s circle
α
Cu τf=qu/2

M
α=450
O X
A C B
σ1=qu σ1=qu
We have,σ1=2Cutanα=2Ctan(45+Φu/2).------------ (11)
In the above equation, there are two unknowns Cu and Φu, which cannot be determined by the unconfined test since a number of
tests on the identical specimens give the same value of σ1. Therefore, the unconfined compression test is generally applicable to
saturated clays for which the apparent angle of shearing resistance Φu is zero.
Hence σ1=2Cu---------------------------------------------------- (12)
When the Mohr’s circle is drawn, its radious is equal to σ1/2=Cu. The failure envelope is horizontal. PF is the failure plane, and the
stresses on the failure plane are σ= σ1/2=qu/2---------- (13)
And τf= σ1/2=qu/2=Cu.-------------------- (14)
Where qu=unconfined compressive strength at failure. The compressive stress is calculated on the basis of changed cross-sectional
area A2 at failure, which is given by
A2=V/L1-ΔL=A1/1- ΔL/L1.--------------- (15)
Where V=initial volume of the specimen; L1=initial length of the specimen, ΔL=change in length at failure.

## D. Vane shear Test:

Vane shear test is a quick test, used either in the laboratory or in the field, to determine the undrained shear strength of cohesive
soil. The vane shear teste consists of four thin steel plates, called vanes, welded orthogonally to a steel rod.
The shear strength of the soil is given by the following formula;
τf=T/[πd2(H/2+d/12)] in KN/m2.
Where,T=torque ii radians, d=diameter of vane, H=height of the vane, τf=unit strength of the soil.
1.Following reading is given in table for normal and maximum shear force for the specimens of sandy clay tested in the shear
box, 36cm2in area under undrained conditions,. Plot the graph (failure envelope) for the soil and determine the values of
apparent angles of shearing resistance and the apparent cohesion.
Normal load (N), σ Maximum shear force (N),τ
100 110
200 152
300 193
400 235

Solution: Procedure;
A. Calculation of normal stress, σ:
1.Normal stress, σ=load/Area=100/36=2.77N/cm2. 2. Normal stress, σ=load/Area=200/36=5.55N/cm2.
3. Normal stress, σ=load/Area=300/36=8.33N/cm2. 4. Normal stress, σ=load/Area=400/36=11.11N/cm2.
B.Calculation of shear stress, τ;
Compiled by: Prof.B.S.Chawhan M.Tech(Geo-Tech Engg), Asst.Professor,CED,Government.Engineering College,Haveri-581110(12/4/2011-Till date)
C.By using natural graph and select normal stress along X-axis and Shear stress along Y-axis.

10
9 Failure envelope,
8 τ=C+σtanΦ Page |
7 13
6
5
τ
4
3
N/cm2

2 Φu in degree=220

1 C in N/cm2=1.85N/cm2

O 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 σ in N/cm2
D.Result:
1.Apparent Cohesion,C=1.85N/cm2.
2.Apparent angle of shearing resistance,Φu=220.
2. A specimen of clay, dry, cohesionless sand is tested on shear box and the soil failed at a shear stress of 40KN/m2 when the
normal load on the specimen was 50KN/m2. Determine (a) the angle of shearing resistance (b) the apparent stress during the
failure (c) The direction of the principal planes with respect to the direction of the plane of shearing.
Y Failure envelope,τ=C+σtanΦ
Solution: Mohr’s circle
Procedure:

kN/m2

## τ=40KN/m2 Φ=38.50 260 640

σ=50KN/m2 A C B σ in KN/m2
O X
A.By using natural graph and select normal stress along X-axis and Shear stress along Y-axis.
B. Result:
1.Locate CD line perpendicular to the failure plane and CA as radious and draw the Mohr’s circle.
2.Now select pole point P and draw DP parallel to X-axis.
3.Cohesionless soil, C=0.
4.Angle of shearing resistance, Φ=38.50.
5.The direction of the principal planes are;
i. Major principal plane=640. (with respect to X-axis clock wise direction)
ii.Minor principal plane=260. (with respect to X-axis anti clock wise direction)
3. A cylindrical specimen of saturated clay 4cm diameter and 9cm in overall length is tested in an unconfined compression test.
The specimen has coned ends and its length between the apex of cones is 8cm. Find the unconfined compressive of clay, if the
specimen fails under an axial load of 46.5N. The change in length of specimen at failure is 1cm.
Solution: Given data:
a.d=4cm, b.L=9cm, c.Length of cylindrical apex of cone=8cm, d.Axial load=46.5N, e. ΔL=1cm.
To find: Unconfined compressive strength,qu=?.
Procedure:
1.Length of cylindrical of the same volume and diameter (Overal length),
L1=8+9=8.5cm
2
Compiled by: Prof.B.S.Chawhan M.Tech(Geo-Tech Engg), Asst.Professor,CED,Government.Engineering College,Haveri-581110(12/4/2011-Till date)
2. Initial cross sectional area,A1=π/4*42=12.566cm2 say 12.57cm2.
3. Area at failure,A2=A1/1- ΔL/L1=12.57/1-1/8.5=14.25cm2.
4. Unconfined compressive strength, qu=Failure load/Failure area=46.5/14.25=3.26N/cm2.
4.Two identical specimens, 4cm in diameter and 8cm in length of partially saturated compacted soil are tested in a triaxial cell
under undrained conditions. The first specimen failed at an additional axial load i.e., deviator load of 720N under cell pressure
of 100KN/m2. The second specimen failed at an additional axial load of 915N under a cell pressure of 200KN/m2. The increase
in volume of the first specimen at failure is 1.2ml and it shortens by 0.6cm at failure. The increase in volume of the second
specimen at failure is 1.6cm and it shortens by 0.8cm at fails. Determine the value apparent cohesion and the angle of shearing Page |
resistance by analytically. 14
Solution; Given data:
1.For the first specimen:
a.d1=4cm,b.L1=8cm, c. σd=720N, d.σ3=100KN/m2, e.ΔV=1.2ml=1.2cm3,f. ΔL=0.6cm.
2. For the second specimen:
a.d1=4cm,b.L1=8cm, c. σd=915N, d.σ3=200KN/m2, e.ΔV=1.6ml=1.6cm3,f. ΔL=0.8cm.
To find: a.C=?, b.Φ=?
Procedure:
1.For the first specimen;
a.Inital area, A1=π/4*42=12.566cm2 say 12.57cm2.
b.Initial volume,V1=A1*L1 =12.57*8=100.56cm2.
c.Area at failure,A1=V1+ΔV/L1-ΔL=100.56+1.2/8-0.6=13.75cm2.
d.Deviator stress at failure, σd=Deviator load/failure area=720/13.75=52.36cm2.
e.We have, σ1= σd+ σ3=523.6+100=623.6KN/m2.
2. For second specimen:
a.Inital area, A2=π/4*42=12.566cm2 say 12.57cm2.
b.Initial volume,V1=A1*L2 =12.57*8=100.56cm2.
c.Area at failure,A1=V1+ΔV/L1-ΔL=100.56+1.6/8-0.8=14.20cm2.
d.Deviator stress at failure, σd=Deviator load/failure area=915/14.20=64.43cm2.
e.We have, σ1= σd+ σ3=523.6+200=844.30KN/m2.
3.By analytically;
σ1= σ3tan2α+2Ctan α
i.e, 623.6=100 tan2α+2Ctan α--------------------- (1)
844.3=200 tan2α+2Ctan α--------------------- (2)
220.3=100 tan2α
α=56.190.
4.We have,α=45+Φ/2
Φ=2(α -45)=2(56.19-45)=22.380.
5.Substituting in eqn (1);
623.6=100 tan256.19+2Ctan56.19
C=136.0KN/m2.
5. Three clay specimens having a small air voids content were tested in a shear box under undrained conditions and the
following observations were made;
Normal stress (KN/m2) 100 200 300
Shear stress (KN/m2) 90 102 108
Find the apparent cohesion and angle of shearing resistance of the clay. What value of apparent cohesion would be obtained
from unconfined compression test on the same soil?.
Solution:
Procedure;
1. By using natural graph and select normal stress along X-axis and shear stress alongY-axis.
2.
P Failure envelope,τ=C+σtanΦ

## Φu=60 Mohr’s circle

τ Cu=80KN/m2

α= 480 176KN/m2

A C B σ in KN/m2
Compiled by: Prof.B.S.Chawhan M.Tech(Geo-Tech Engg), Asst.Professor,CED,Government.Engineering College,Haveri-581110(12/4/2011-Till date)
3. From graph;
i. Apparent cohesion,Cu=80KN/m2.
ii.Apparent angle of shearing resistance,Φu=60.
4. For unconfined compressive strength test;
i. Failure angle,α=45+ Φu/2=45+6/2=480.
ii.Apparent Cohesion,Cu=176/2=88KN/m2.
6. Following are the results of undrained triaxial compression test on two identical soil specimen at failure;
Lateral pressure,σ3(KN/m2) 100 300 Page |
Total pressure, σ1(KN/m2) 440 760 15
Pore pressure,u(KN/m2) -20 60
Determine the cohesion and angle of shearing resistance a.reffered to total stress, b.reffered to effective stress.
Solution:
Procedure:
1. We have; σ= σI+u
2. For first specimen, σI1= σ1-u=440-(-20)=460KN/m2.
3. σI3= σ3-u=100-(-20)=120KN/m2.
4. For second specimen,σI1= σ1-u=760-60=700KN/m2.
5. σI3= σ3-u=300-60=240KN/m2.
6. Now draw the Mohr’s circle on natural graph sheet, i.e.,
Modified failure envelope,τf=CI+σItanΦI.
Y

Failure envelope,τ=C+σtanΦ

ΦIu=200
Φu=130 Mohr’s circles

CIu=170KN/m2
τ
Cu=110KN/m2

X
σ3 σI3 σ3 σI3 σ1 σI1 σ
σ1 σI1

7.Results:
i. Apparent cohesion,Cu=110KN/m2.
ii. Apparent angle of shearing resistance, Φu=130.
iii. Apparent effective cohesion, CIu=170KN/m2.
iv. Apparent angle of shearing resistance, ΦIu=200.
July.2007
7. Undrained triaxial tests are carried out on four identical specimens of silty clay and the following results are obtained;
Cell pressure, σ3 in KN/m2 50 100 150 200
Deviator stress at failure, σd in KN/m2 350 440 530 610
Pore pressure,u in KN/m2 5 10 12 18
Determine the values of the effective angle of shearing resistance and the cohesion intercept by plotting a.Conventional failure
envelope from Mohr’s circles, b.Modified failure envelope.
Solution: Procedure:
A.Following table shows the necessary calculation of plotting the failure envelope.
Specimen σ3 in u in σd in σ1 in KN/m2 σI1 in σI3 in ½(σI1 + σI3) in ½(σI1 - σI3)
2 2 2
No KN/m KN/m KN/m =σd- σ3 KN/m = σ1- u KN/m = σ3- u KN/m2
2 2
in KN/m2

## 1 50 5 350 400 395 45 220 175

2 100 10 440 540 530 90 310 220
3 150 12 530 680 668 138 403 265
4 200 18 610 810 792 182 487 305
Compiled by: Prof.B.S.Chawhan M.Tech(Geo-Tech Engg), Asst.Professor,CED,Government.Engineering College,Haveri-581110(12/4/2011-Till date)
B. Now plot using natural graph, draw Mohr’s circles and determine C and Φ.

## Modified failure envelope

τf=CI+σItanΦI

Page |
Mohr’s Failure envelope 16
ΦI in degree Τ=C+σtanΦ
C in KN/m2
I

## Φ in degree Mohr’s circles

τ
C in KN/m2
2
KN/m

σ3 σ3 σ3 σ1 σ1 σ1
σ in KN/m2

C.Now select X-axis and Y-axis scale then select values from table above and determine CI and ΦI.
8. A vane 10cm long and 8cm in diameter was pressed into soft clay at the bottom of a borehole. Torque was applied and
gradually increased to 45N-m when failure takes place. Subsequently the vane rotated rapidly so as to completely remolded
the soil. The remolded soil was shared at a torque of 18N-m. calculate the cohesion of the clay in the natural and remolded
states and also the value of the sensitivity.
Solution: Given data;
A.Natural state;
a.T=4500N-cm, b.H=10cm, c.d=8cm.
B.Remolded state;
a.T=1800N-cm,b.H=10cm,c.d=8cm.
To find: a.τf=?, b.Sensitivity=?.
Procedure:
1.Natural state;
a.We have;
τf=T/[πd2(H/2+d/6)] in KN/m2.
τf=4500/[π*82*(10/2+8/6)]=3.533 N/cm2 or 35.33 KN/m2.
2.Remolded state;
b.We have;
τf=T/[πd2(H/2+d/6)] in KN/m2.
τf=1800/[π*82*(10/2+8/6)]=1.413 N/cm2 or 14.13 KN/m2.
Dec.2010
9. A shear box test on soil sample gave the following data:
(i) (ii)
Normal pressure kN/m2 150 250
Shear stress kN/m2 110 120
What would be the deviator stress at failure, if triaxial test is carried on the same soil with a cell pressure of 150kN/m2.
Solution:
Procedure;
1. We know that, τf=C+σtanΦ
110=C+150tanΦ
120=C+250tanΦ
Then, C=95kN/m2, Φ=5.710.
2. By Triaxial test;
σ1=σ3tanα2+2Ctanα=392.99N/m2, ( σ3=150kN/m2, α=45+Φ/2=45+5.71/2=47.8550)
σd=σ1-σ3=392.99-150=242.99kN/m2.
Compiled by: Prof.B.S.Chawhan M.Tech(Geo-Tech Engg), Asst.Professor,CED,Government.Engineering College,Haveri-581110(12/4/2011-Till date)
Dec.2010
10.Unconfined compressive strength of soil is 150kN/m2. A sample of the same soil failed at a deviator stress of 200kN/m2,
when it is tested in triaxial compression test with a cell pressure of 50kN/m2. Determine the shear parameters.
Solution:
Procedure:
1. σ1=2Ctanα---------from unconfined compression test
2. σ1=σ3tanα2+2Ctanα---------from triaxial test
Where, σ3=50kN/m2 , σd=200kN/m2 Page |
Then σ1=σd+σ3=200+50=250kN/m2 17
3. 250=50tanα2+150, then α54.730 and α=45+Φ/2 therefore Φ=19.460.
May/June.2010
11. A direct shear test was conducted on a soil, whose results are given below:
Normal stress (kN/m2) 150 250
Shear stress at failure (kN/m2) 110 120
Plot the graph and determine the shear strength parameters of the soil. If a triaxial test is conducted on the same soil, what
would be the deviator stress at failure when the cell pressure is 150kN/m2.
Solution:
Procedure:
1. From direct shear test graph, Φ=60, C=95kN/m2.
2.α=45+Φ/2=45+6/2=480
3. σ1=σ3tanα2+2Ctanα=150tan482+2Ctan48=396kN/m2
4. σd=σ1-σ3=396-150=246kN/m2

May/June.2010
12. A saturated cohesive soil fails under an axial stress of 150kN/m2 in unconfined compression test. The failure plane makes
an angle of 520 with horizontal. Calculate the shear parameters C and Φ.
Solution:
Procedure:
1. σ1f=qu=150kN/m2
2. α=45+Φ/2=520, then Φ=140
3. Cu=qu/2tanα=58.6kN/m2.

Dec.09/Jan.10
13. A remoulded specimen of soil prepared by compaction to standard proctor maximum dry unit weight at optimum
moisture content, is used for consolidated undrained triaxial test with pore pressure measurements. The test results are given
below.
Test.No Cell pressure kN/m2 Deviator stress at failure, kN/m2 Pore pressure kN/m2
1 040 300 05
2 100 443 10
3 165 615 12
Determine the values of effective shear stress parameters, by
i) Drawing
ii) Drawing modified envelope.
Solution:
Procedure:
1. Make the table

## Sl.No σ3f (σ1- σ3)f σ1f uf σI3f σI1f pi qi

1 40 300 340 5 35 335 185 150
2 100 443 543 10 90 533 311.5 221.5
3 165 615 780 12 153 768 460.5 307.5
Compiled by: Prof.B.S.Chawhan M.Tech(Geo-Tech Engg), Asst.Professor,CED,Government.Engineering College,Haveri-581110(12/4/2011-Till date)
2. Y

Page |
τ Results: 18
kN/m2 Φi=340
i 0
Φ =34 Ci=60kN/m2
200

ci
X
200 400 600 800
Fig. Mohr’s failure envelope

3.

ψi=290
Results:
di=50
ψi=290
qi Φi=Sin-1(tanψi)=33.660
ci=di/cosΦi=60kN/m2
kN/m2 kfline

di

pi (kN/m2)

## Fig. Modified failure envelope

Dec.08/Jan.09
14. In a drained triaxial compression test a saturated sand sample failed at a deviator stress of 360kN/m2 and cell pressure of
100kN/m2. Find the effective shear parameters of sand. If another identical sample is tested under a cell pressure of 200kn/m2.
Determine graphically the deviator stress at which the specimen fails. Check your results analytically.
Solution:
Procedure:
1. σ1=σ3+σd=100+360=460kN/m2
2. σ1=σ3tan2α+2Ctanα-----------------------C=0
460=100tan2(45+Φ/2)
Φ=4000i18.7ii
3. σ1=σ3+σd
σ1=200tan2(45+4000i18.7ii)
σ1=920kN/m2
4. σd=σ1-σ3=920-200=720kN/m2.
5. Check graphically also, i.e Plot the Mohr’s Circles on natural graph sheet.
Compiled by: Prof.B.S.Chawhan M.Tech(Geo-Tech Engg), Asst.Professor,CED,Government.Engineering College,Haveri-581110(12/4/2011-Till date)
Dec.08/Jan.09
15. An unconfined compression test was conducted on an undisturbed sample of soil. The sample had a diameter of 40mm was
80mm long. The load at failure was 28N and axial deformation of sample was 12mm. If the failure plane makes an angle of 600
with the horizontal, determine the shear strength parameters of the soil.
Solution:
Procedure:
1. A0=π/4*(40)2=1256.64mm2.
2. Є=ΔL/L=12/80=0.15. Page |
3. Ai=A0/(1-Є)=1256.64/(1-0.15)=1478.4mm2. 19
5. C=qc/2tanα=0.0189/2tan60=5.46X10-3N/mm2.
6.α=(45+Φ/2), then Φ=300.
7. C=5.46X10-3N/mm2=5.46kN/m2 and Φ=300
2002scheme
.May/June.2010
16. Two identical soil specimen were ina triaxial apparatus. First specimen failed at a deviator stress of 770kN/m2 under a cell
pressure of 400kN/m2. Determine the value of C and Φ analytically. If the same soil is tested on a direct shear apparatus, with
a normal stress of 600kN/m2, estimate the shear stress at failure.
Solution:
Procedure:
1. First test:
σ1=σ3+σd=200+770=970kN/m2.
970=200tan2α+2Ctanα--------(1)
2. Second test:
σ1=σ3+σd=400+1370=1770kN/m2.
1770=400tan2α+2Ctanα--------(2)
3. From eqn(1) and eqn(2)
200tan2α=800
Then tanα=2 or α=63.430, then Φ=36.870.
4. Putting in eqn(1) & (2)
C=42.5kN/m2.
5. For shear box test
τ=C+σtanΦ=42.5+600tan36.87=492.50kN/m2.

2002schem.June-July.2009
17. The direct shear test conducted on a soil specimens gives following results at failure.
Test No Normal stress(kN/m2 Shear stress (kN/m2)
1 100 50
2 150 70
3 200 90

Draw the Mohr’s envelope. Determine shear parameters and for any one failure point the orientation of principal planes and
stresses. Y
Solution: 100 Results:
Procedure: 75 1.C=10kN/m2
1. 2. Φ=21.80
50
τ
25 Φ=21.80

C
X
25 50 75 100 125 150 200
σ3 σ1

2. From graph;
a. σ3=62.5kN/m2, b.σ1=180kN/m2, c.α=45+Φ/2=45+21.8/2=55.800, d. α=45=145.900.
Compiled by: Prof.B.S.Chawhan M.Tech(Geo-Tech Engg), Asst.Professor,CED,Government.Engineering College,Haveri-581110(12/4/2011-Till date)
June/July.2008.
18. A vane shear test was conducted at the bottom of a bore hole by pressing the vane, 10cm long and 8cm in diameter, fully
into the clay. Torque was applied gradually and the failure took place when the torque was 45Nm. After the failure, the vane
was rotated rapidly to remould the clay completely. The remoulded clay was once again subjected to shearing and the failure
was observed at a torque of 10Nm. Calculate the cohesion of the clay in the natural and remoulded states. Also calculate the
value of sensitivity of the clay.

Dec-2011 Page |
19. In a direct shear test on sand, the sample failed at a shear stress of 7okN/m2, when normal stress was 100kN/m2. 20
Dewtermine the angle of internal friction. Determine the major and minor principal stresses. Mark the major and minor
principal planes on Mohr’s circle.
Ans: 1. σ 3 =OA=Minor principal stress=64KN/m2=64kpa.
2. σ 1 =OB=Major principal stress=236KN/m2=236kpa.
3. φ ′ =350
Dec-2011
20. Determine the shear strength parameters of a soil tested in a triaxial test for following data. Use analytical method. Check
your results by graphical method.
Trial 1Trial 2
Cell pressure (kN/m2) 100 200
Axial pressure at failure (kN/m2) 250 390

Ans: 1.
σ31=100 kN/m2 σ32=200 kN/m2
σd1=250 kN/m2 σd2=390 kN/m2
σ11=350 kN/m2 σ12=590 kN/m2
2. σ 1 = σ 3 tan 2 α + 2C tan α
350 = 100 tan 2 α + 2C tan α -------------------(1)
590 = 200 tan 2 α + 2C tan α ------------------ (2)
Solving equation 1 and 2;
We get, α=25.170
Φ=24.30
C=35.5kN/m2
3. Plot by graphically and verify

21. Following are the results of four drained direct shear tests on over consolidated clay. Diameter of
specimen=50mm and height of specimen=25mm.
Test No Normal force, in N Shear force at failure,Speak in N Residual shear force, Rresidual in N
1 150 157.5 44.2
2 250 199.9 56.6
3 350 257.6 102.9
4 550 363.4 144.5
Determine the relationships for peak shear strength (τf) and residual shear strength(τres).
22. For normally consolidated clay, the results of a drained triaxial test are as follows;
Chamber confining pressure=16KN/m2 and deviator stress at failure=25KN/m2.
a. Find the angle of friction,ΦI, and b.Determine the angle α that the failure plane makes with the major principal plane.

23. Clean and dry sand samples were tested in a large shear box, 25cm*25cm and the following results
were obtained;
Normal load in KN 05 10 15
Peak shear load in KN 05 10 15
Ultimate shear load in KN 2.9 5.8 8.7
Determine the angle of shearing resistance of the sand in the dense and loose states.

24. The following data were obtained in a direct shear test. Normal pressure=20KN/m2 shear pressure=16KN/m2. Angle of
internal friction=200, cohesion=8KN/m2. Represents the data by Mohr’s Circle and compute the principal stresses and the
direction of the principal planes.
Compiled by: Prof.B.S.Chawhan M.Tech(Geo-Tech Engg), Asst.Professor,CED,Government.Engineering College,Haveri-581110(12/4/2011-Till date)
25. In a drained triaxial compression test, a saturated specimen of cohesionless sand fails under a deviator stress of 535KN/m2
when the cell pressure is 150KN/m2. Find the effective angle of shearing resistance of sand and the approximate
inclination of the failure plane to the horizontal. Graphical method is allowed.

26. A thin layer of silt exists at a depth of 18m below the surface of the ground. The soil above this level has an average dry
density of 1.53Mg/m3and an average water content of 36%. The water table is almost at the surface. tests on undisturbed
samples of the silt indicate the following values;
Cu=45KN/m2;Φu=180;CI=35KN/m2; ΦI=270. Estimate the shearing resistance of the silt on a horizontal plane,a.when the Page |
shear stress builds up rapidly and b. when the shear stress builds up very slowly. 21
27. A vane, 10.8cm long, 7.2cm in diameter, was pressed into a soft clay at the bottom of a borehole. Torque was applied and
the value at failure was 45Nm. Find the shear strength of the clay on a horizontal plane.

Good Luck