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GDSLAB v2

The GDS Laboratory Users Handbook

GDS Instruments Ltd, 2003


http://www.gdsinstruments.com

About this Manual


The GDSLAB v2 users manual is divided into logical chapters. Where necessary at the start
of each chapter is a contents page showing in detail the contents of the chapter.

Introduction
A brief introduction to GDSLAB, covering the design ideas and the scope of the
software.

Installation
A step by step installation guide for GDSLAB kernel and additional components.

Running a Test
Shows how tests are run in general. Elements that are common to all tests are
explained.

Selecting Hardware Initialisation file

Selecting, inputting values and commencing a test

The GDSLAB Graphical Environment


An introduction to the GDSLAB environment. This chapter simply takes a brief look at
the GDSLAB environment with simple explanations of associated windows and
menus.

GDSLAB Toolbar

Configuring your station hardware


Individual Test Stations are demonstrated and configured in detail.

Object Display

Transducer Calibrations

Test Modules
This section describes the test procedures according to particular test modules. Not
all available test modules may feature in this manual. For a full list of test modules
currently available for GDSLAB contact GDS Instruments directly or see
www.gdsinstruments.com.

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About

GDSLAB Calculation Modules


Calculation Modules are required for each different type of geotechnical test. See the
relevant test module chapter for details as to which calculation module is used.:

7a, Triaxial

7b, Oedometer

etc

User Maintenance and the Object Manager


Adding new components to GDSLAB and upgrading existing components.

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About

Introduction
Overview

GDSLAB is a program for the control and/or data acquisition of geotechnical laboratory tests.
The design of GDSLAB allows for flexibility in the way equipment is connected to the PC (i.e.
RS232, IEEE, USB), and flexibility in the type of equipment that may be connected (i.e.
includes equipment from a variety of manufacturers).

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Introduction

1 Introduction
GDSLAB represents a breakthrough in geotechnical laboratory control software. As well as
working with the entire range of GDS's laboratory hardware, GDSLAB can also be used with
other manufacturers' testing equipment.

Features

Flexibility in hardware configuration including mix and match with other manufacturers.

Ability to choose particular test modules for your testing requirements or your
International Standards requirements.

Single piece of software for all laboratory products. This means that the testing quality will
be dependent on the hardware attached, not the software.

GDSLAB may be used to acquire and manipulate data from your existing hardware where
computer control is not available

SPECIFIC ENHANCED SOFTWARE FEATURES

Multiple stations from a single PC.

Ability to batch (queue) multiple tests.

Ability to dynamically change graphs displayed during the test.

Ability to dynamically change the Live Test Data displayed during the test.

Flexibility in choosing exactly the format for saved data.

What can GDSLAB do for me ?


Firstly, you can modernise and automate all your existing laboratory facilities and services
using the latest Windows-based testing software.

Secondly, you can extend the capabilities of your testing apparatus and instrumentation.

Have you ever thought that you can perform slow cyclic tests or Stress Paths tests using
computer control of simple 'velocity controlled' loading frames? As long as the frame has a
PC control connection, these facilities become available to you.

Thirdly, you can plan the future development of your laboratory within a framework which
complies with national and international standards.

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Introduction

Finally, when purchasing new equipment, you can choose the most cost-effective options
from different manufacturers, without having to worry about compatibility problems. Again, this
means that the quality of the tests will be as good as the hardware connected.

How does GDS Lab work?


GDSLAB is initially purchased as a Kernel, or a core program. This kernel is the initial
foundation for the GDSLAB program.

Test Modules
Test Modules are then purchased to bring the software to life. Each module is purchased
according to the types of test the user will be performing. An example of modules for research
or for commercial use appears below.

Commercial example

General Saturation and Consolidation

General Triaxial testing to BS1377 (includes CU, UU and CD tests)

Oedometer consolidation logging

Research Example

General Saturation and Consolidation

Advanced Triaxial Testing

Stress Path Module

K0 Testing module

The above examples highlight the flexibility of the software by allowing the user to choose
exactly which test module he would like to attach to GDSLAB.

The way GDSLAB is designed, gives the user flexibility for future upgrades by adding
additional test modules at any time in the future.

Device Modules
The Hardware used with the test modules is controlled using GDSLAB Device Modules.
GDSLAB requires each piece of connected hardware to have available on the system its
correct device module. These device modules are available free of charge for all hardware

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Introduction

already supported by GDSLAB, or a small cost may be levied for control device modules not
currently supported (from less well known manufacturers).

When the GDSLAB kernel is

installed, all the currently available device modules at the time the setup was created will be
installed. Additional or updated device modules are available for download directly from the
GDS website (www.gdsinstruments.com).

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Introduction

Installation

Overview
2

INSTALLATION ......................................................................................................... 2

2.1

Installation from CD ..................................................................................................................................2

2.2

First: Install the GDSLAB Kernel ........................................................................................................2

2.3

Second: Using the Installation Manager.........................................................................................3

2.4

Internet download (not currently available)...................................................................................7

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Installation

2 Installation
GDSLAB primary installation can be obtained in two distribution formats:

CD directly from GDS

Downloaded from the internet

If you are re-installing a completely new version of GDSLAB you should first un-install the old
version. To do this simply go to Add/Remove programs from the Windows Control Panel and
remove GDSLAB.

The same of course applies to Test Modules (all test modules may be

identified by the first 4 characters of the name being GDS_).

2.1 Installation from CD

Insert the supplied CD in to your CD-ROM

2.2 First: Install the GDSLAB Kernel


The GDSLAB kernel is installed by running the following file:

D:\ setup.exe

(where D is the drive letter of your CDROM)

This can be run by browsing to the file with either Windows Explorer or My Computer or explicitly
referencing the file from the run menu as follows:

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Installation

Click OK and follow the on-screen instructions (Note: you must select the target directory as
C:\GDSLAB\ if it has not already done so).

Common Windows files may be running when the installation procedure tries to overwrite them
and an error message will be displayed. This may be OK if you can choose to ignore this and
continue, but make a note of the files the PC rejected. You may be asked to re-boot your PC
before proceeding.

The setup procedure will install the following to your PC:

GDSLAB kernel and associated compulsory files.

All device drivers available at the time of the release of the CD.

The GDSLAB kernel is now ready to run but will not be able to perform any testing yet.

GDSLAB icon should have been added to your Programs directory, along with an icon for the
Installation Manager. Before you can run any tests, the installation manager must be run to install
following additional components, namely:

Test Module(s) at least one test module must exist on your PC.

Hardware Configuration file this file describes the connectivity of your hardware.

and finally

The software is security protected by a HASP dongle. Software for this dongle will
need to be installed.

2.3 Second: Using the Installation Manager


The installation manager should be run by either selecting it from the Programs directory (a), or
from within GDSLAB on the management toolbar (b).

(a) from desktop

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(b) from within GDSLAB

2-3

Installation

When the Installation Manager is run a screen will appear as follows:

The buttons labelled 1 5 on the left of the form are the individual sections for additional
installation.

These should preferably be followed in order (i.e. 1 to 5), where at each stage

decisions need to be made about what components need to be installed/are required for your
system. Note: there is no need to install everything! only install those components you require,
you can always come back and install additional components at any time.

Selection 1 (Test Modules) will browse the GDSLAB CD to the Test Modules directory. A
separate list of Test Modules available on the CD are situated within this directory. Each test
module allows a different suite of tests to be run. Within the Test Module directory, browse into the
directory of your chosen Test Module, then click Go!.

Remember: There may be more test modules on you CD than are actually enabled by your GDS
HASP security dongle (key which is inserted in the back of the PC). In which case it is only
sensible to install those modules that you know you will have access to.

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To enable other

Installation

modules, contact GDS and ask for a remote dongle update. Test modules that have not been
purchased will only run as demonstration versions and will not save any test data.

When you choose to create a station, the program will look for any file with the .ini extension
within the C:\GDSLAB\ directory. This file describes the hardware and the way each transducer
or control parameter is connected to your computer for a particular station. This is what gives
GDSLAB the flexibility to run different hardware configurations as defined by the user.

Clicking on the Station INI files button will show the following form:

A list of Hardware Initialisation Files (INI files) available on the CD are situated in their own
directory within Hardware Configuration Files.

Each *.ini file describes a different hardware

configuration. When an ini file is selected a description of its Station Setup appears on the right of
the screen in the yellow box. Press Go! to transfer this file to the C:\GDSLAB directory ready
for use when GDSLAB is next run.

Contact GDS if you are unsure as to which ini file you should run, or you would like a custom
Hardware ini file made for your individual requirements (free of charge of course!).
Each test module allows a different suite of tests to be run.

The program utility called Visual Planner is designed for creating your own hardware
configuration files from new.

An essential step of the GDSLAB installation is to install the security module. This will activate all
of the purchased test modules.

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Installation

Simply pressing Go! on the screen below will activate the full installation process for the GDS
HASP key. If the program does not find a HASP directory on your CD, it will allow you to browse
to a floppy disk (sometimes the hasp security key files are distributed on a floppy disk). Simply
browse to the root directory of the correct floppy, and click OK, or select the Floppy (A:) option
box.

Plug the security module (dongle) into the computers parallel port and GDSLAB is ready to use.

The files that comes with the security module are specific to that dongle, and no others.
When the security software has been installed, only the dongle relating to this software will
enable the test modules. The dongle itself holds keys to enable particular test modules.
To enable further test modules on your dongle, contact GDS Instruments Ltd for details.

This option simply allows for easy installation of any additional programs/utilities that are available
on the GDSLAB CD. Simply select the required utility and press Go! to install. The example
below shows installation for Adobe Acrobat Reader required to be installed on a PC before this
manual may be read as it is in pdf (*.pdf) format (the manual may be found on the GDSLAB CD in
the directory GDSLAB Manual.

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Installation

The Object Manager is a tools for viewing all of the GDS dlls (dynamic link libraries) currently
installed on the PC. The version number and a short description of the file is displayed.

From the Tools menu, all of the files installed may be printed (to a file or a printer), to enable
diagnostics and version conflicts to be addressed.

Also from the Tools menu, files may be

registered and unregistered easily if required by GDS.

To return to the Installation Manager select this option from the File menu item.

2.4 Internet download (not currently available).

Internet downloads of all software modules and latest hardware devices will be available

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Installation

Running a Test

Overview
This chapter shows the general running of tests. Due to the nature of GDSLAB where the tests
available depend upon which test modules you have chosen for your system, mainly elements
that are common to all tests are explained. For information regarding specific tests, please see
section 6 for the relevant test module.

RUNNING A TEST..................................................................................................... 2

3.1

Selecting your Hardware Configuration file ..................................................................................2

3.2

Running a Test for the First Time?....................................................................................................4

3.3

Selecting a Data File.................................................................................................................................4

3.4

Entering Specimen Details.....................................................................................................................6

3.5

Docking, Undocking and New Specimens .....................................................................................8

3.6

Adding a Test Stage ............................................................................................................................... 10

3.7

Saving a Test List .................................................................................................................................... 11

3.8
Test Display Window ............................................................................................................................. 12
3.8.1
Graph Tabs ..........................................................................................................................................13
3.8.2
The Data Tab ......................................................................................................................................13
3.8.3
Customising the Data Display during a test..............................................................................13
3.9

Commencing a test ................................................................................................................................. 14

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Running a Test

3 Running a Test
To run a test a Test Station must be configured for your required hardware. It is of course also
important that the communications devices must be setup to the correct settings. This chapter
takes you step by step through the processes when you first run a test.

3.1 Selecting your Hardware Configuration file


When GDSLAB is first run or if no configuration files have previously been stored you will be
presented with a screen similar to below:

This means that no stations are configured. Upon clicking on the blank station 1 icon, only 1
option is available for that station, that of Create Station as follows:

The Select Station Configuration window will now be visible.

List of available
station configurations
Default selection

Station configurations may be selected from the drop down list of available station configurations.

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Running a Test

If you wish the station configuration to remain constant and to be configured whenever the
software is run, check the default selection box entitled Always start with this file? before you
press the OK button. The files for default startup may be later edited from File, Edit Startup file
from the menu bar.

If there are no station configurations listed, refer to chapter 2, Installation Manager.

Once the correct station configuration has been selected press the OK button.

At this point, all of the hardware configured in the station configuration will be audited to check the
status of each hardware item (this operation requires no user intervention unless a hardware
problem is encountered). Once the hardware audit is complete the Test Plan window will be
launched for the configured station. Note also that in the Scrolling Toolbar the station icon has
now changed to the station configured icon.

Station x Test
Plan window

The title bar of the Station Test Plan window will display the Station Number and the
configuration file name (ini file) used to setup the station.

After initialisation of a station the Station Status will be Station Idle. This indicates that the
station is configured and that there is no test currently running.

The station is now configured and ready to run a test.

With a test station now completely configured the sample maybe installed in the apparatus. The
Specimen Details must be entered and a test plan configured.

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Running a Test

3.2 Running a Test for the First Time?


If you are running a test for the first time, or you are using an initialisation file for the first time, you
must now go to Chapter 5, Configuring Station Hardware before continuing with this chapter.
Chapter 5 will take you through the configuration for your hardware setup, ensuring all correct
device are in place and that communications parameters are setup correctly.

3.3 Selecting a Data File


Clicking the Data Save button in Test Plan window of any station will reveal the Data File frame.

Pressing the Choose Data File button will reveal a data saving window allowing you to choose
the filename and rate of saving data for your test. When a filename is successfully selected, it will
appear in the box labelled Filename: above.

Upon pressing the Choose Data File button, the first screen displayed will be for a choice of
either Single Directory or GDSLAB Project Structure (shown below).

Single directory will

prompt you for a single filename in the directory of your choice, whereas GDSLAB Project
Structure will save the data ready to be used with GDSLAB Reports (if you have it). Please refer
to GDSLAB Reports handbook for more information on saving data in this way. Note: If you do
not have GDSLAB Reports then we recommend you to use the Single Directory save option.

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Running a Test

Upon choosing Single Directory and pressing the Next> button, the next displayed screen
(shown below) will prompt you for data saving information.

The information on this form is described as follows:


-

Data Saving Format


.gds default GDSLAB format, includes all header and all column data with labels
(recommended)
.tas format for the previous version of GDS GDSTAS software. Enables users to save
data in the same format as their previous software.
.tts - format for the previous version of GDS STDTTS software. Enables users to save
data in the same format as their previous software.

Data Saving Type


Linear saves data every seconds
2

Sqr-root saves data every x(datapoint number)


Log - saves data every x EXP(datapoint number)

where is defined by the Data Saving Interval.


-

Save Calculated Data


When selected, GDSLAB calculated data will be saved in your data file as well as the raw
data.

The final form is for filename selection as follows:

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Running a Test

3.4 Entering Specimen Details


From the Station Test Plan window, with the left mouse button click the Sample button to reveal
the Sample Details page.

The Sample Details page shows the default National Standard to which the specimen details
are to be recorded, in this case the British Standard BS1377 has been selected as the standard.
Other National Standards (where available) may be selected from the dropdown list.

To enter the Sample Details click the left mouse button on the Setup Sample Details button.

Initially you will get a dialog box asking Is this the first test on a new specimen?.

If you answer YES, the back volume change transducer will be set to zero at the start of the test
(and the axial displacement transducer if the test is a docked test). This means that the initial
specimen height and diameter is assumed to be exactly as entered on the specimen details form.
If you say NO, the back volume change (and axial displacement) will remain unchanged and the
software will therefore assume that any volume change appearing on the back volume change
transducer is as a result of a previous test stage and should therefore be used in the calculation of
current (therefore initial) height and diameter.

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Running a Test

Next you will get a dialog box asking Is the specimen docked?.

Docked means that the specimen top cap is in contact with the load ram (i.e. anisotropic, or
about to start an anisotropic test). Undocked means that the specimen top cap is not in contact
with the load ram and the test is therefore isotropic.

For further information regarding the

consequences to the software of a docked or an undocked specimen, please see section 3.5
entitled Docking and Undocking.

The initial specimen details may be recorded in the table provided, entry of any of the suggested
data items is optional with the exception of the Initial Sample Dimensions as this data is
required for calculations during testing.

Area for sample


detail entry
(optional)

Sample Dimensions
(compulsory)

Ram Diameter (0 if
internal load cell)

The Ram Diameter is important, particularly when you are using an external load cell. In this
situation, the ram diameter is used to calculate and make a correction for the upthrust on the ram
created by the cell pressure. If using an internal load cell, the change in cell pressure does not
effect the load reading and hence the Ram Diameter should be set to zero (0).

Once all of the required sample details have been entered select OK.

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Running a Test

Once the specimen details have been entered the specimen icon will be checked as a reminder.
The input sample details may be reviewed by clicking the Review button.

The Sample Details frame may be left in view or minimised by pressing the Sample button. The
Sample Details may be reopened at any time by pressing the Review button

Now the sample details have been entered the Test Stages that we wish to run must be
configured. Click the Add Test Stage button to configure the first test stage.

3.5 Docking, Undocking and New Specimens


The software needs to know the current docking situation of the specimen, in order to make
adjustments to the sample information and calculations when changing between the docked and
undocked states. It is therefore important to enter at the very start of the program whether the
specimen is currently docked or not.

A docked test is any anisotropic test (i.e. advanced

loading or K0). An undocked test is any isotropic test (i.e. any test within the SATCON module
namely saturation, consolidation or B-check).
Notes:
-

When changing tests from the docked to the undocked state, the current specimen
dimensions are transferred to become the initial dimensions for the stage, and then the
back volume change is set to zero. During the undocked test stage, any specimen
dimension changes are calculated from any back volume changes only.

When changing tests from the undocked to the docked state, the current specimen
dimensions are transferred to become the initial dimensions for the stage, then the back
volume and the axial displacement transducer are set to zero. During a docked test
any specimen dimension changes are calculated from back volume change and any
measured axial displacement.

When changing test stages where the docking state does not change, then no zeroing or
transferral of dimensions is done.

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Running a Test

Flow chart showing consequences of New Test and Specimen Docked questions.

New test or after a Clear all test details

NO

YES

If test is to be an UNDOCKED test, back volume is set to


zero at start of the test stage.
If test is to be a DOCKED test, back volume and axial
displacement are set to zero at the start of the test stage.

(In both cases this means that the initial height and diameter
are as entered in the specimen details)

No transducers set to zero


resulting in specimen height and
diameter for the start of the
stage being calculated from the
initial height and diameter plus
any back volume change and
axial displacement accordingly.

YES

YES

NO

Is the
test to be a docked
test?

Existing values
of Height,
Diameter, Axial
Displacement
and back
volume change
are maintained.

YES

NO

Transfer current
height and diameter
to become initial
height and diameter
for start of test stage.
Then zero back
volume change.
Sample should now
be undocked before
proceding.

Current height and diameter are


transfered to become initial height
and diameter for start of test stage
(calculated from back volume
change only as previous test was
undocked). Back volume change
and axial displacement then zero
set to zero. Sample should now
be docked before proceding.

Next Stage

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Is the
test to be a docked
test?

Existing values
of Height,
Diameter, Axial
Displacement
and back
volume change
are maintained.

Next Stage
3-9

NO

Running a Test

3.6 Adding a Test Stage


Clicking the Add Test Stage button in the Test Plan window of any station will reveal the Add
Test Stage frame below the Specimen Details Frame.

In GDSLAB, a test stage may be a complete standard test, for example a pre-test such as a
saturation test or a consolidation test, or a main test such as a shearing test or a stress path test.
The types of tests that are available are independent of the test modules that have been
purchased, and have been subsequently installed on your system. The registered test modules
are displayed in the dropdown box within the Add Test Stage frame. Select the test stage that
you require from the drop down box and then click the Create New Test Stage button.

The Test Module Details form will be viewed according to the Test Module name that was
selected from the dropdown box. The Test Module Details forms are different for each test
module. Individual test module detail forms are explained in Chapter 6, Test Module Details.

Once a Test Module details form has been completed and added to the Test Plan the test is
ready to commence. Note that the Test Module icon has been checked to show that at least one
test stage has been configured.

Further Test Stages may be added to the test plan by clicking the Create New Test Stage button
again.

When all of the required Test Stages are configured and the user is ready to start the test click
the Test List button on the Station Test Plan window.

A summary of the Test Plan will be displayed below the Add Test Stage window (if it has not
been minimised).
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Running a Test

If the Test Plan is now complete the Go to Test button should be clicked to start the first Test
Stage of the Test Plan.

At this stage further test stages may be created by pressing the Create New Test Stage button or
the specimen details may be reviewed by pressing the Review Button.

Test Stages that have already been configured may be reviewed and edited by double clicking on
the appropriate line in the test plan display.

The test may now be launched using the Go To Test button.

3.7 Saving a Test List


A complete Test List can be saved by pressing the Save list to file button beneath the test plan.
This will save the complete test plan as a *.pln file, which includes all of the entered data for each
individual test. The test plan may then be recalled at a later date by pressing the Load list from
file button. This feature is particularly useful if you are performing a series of identical test stages
on a routine basis.

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Running a Test

3.8 Test Display Window


After the Go To Test button has been clicked the Test Display window will be launched.

The Test Display window is made of a series of four tabs:

Graphs 1, 2 and 3

Data

Some features are common to all of the display tabs, Live Test
Data and the Test Control panels. The Live Test Data display is
located to the right of the Test Display window.

The Test Control panel is displayed at the foot of the Test Display window. The Test Control
panel contains two buttons. The Start Test button (which becomes a Stop Test button when
pressed) may be used at any stage for starting or stopping a test. The Test Plan may also be
reviewed form here.

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Running a Test

The data type that is displayed in any of the graphs or the Live Test Data area may be changed
by double clicking on any of the graphs or the Live Data area or by clicking on the Browse Live
Data Options.

3.8.1 Graph Tabs


The 3 Graph Tabs allow you to setup and toggle between 3 separate graphs with up to 2 Y-axes
on each.

The data sets displayed in any of the graphs may be changed by double clicking on any of the
graphs and selecting the required data set.

3.8.2 The Data Tab


The Data tab displays a Live Data grid. As data is saved during a test the saved data will be
added to the Live Data grid.

3.8.3 Customising the Data Display during a test


To customise the data display any graph may be double clicked or the Browse Live Data
Options clicked. Where a graph has been double clicked the Station Test Options window is
opened with the Graph Selection tab selected. If the Browse Live Data Options button is used
the Station Test Options windows is opened with the Live Test Data Options tab selected.

Graph selection and Live Test Data options may be changed at any time during a running test.

The Graph Options are the same for all three of the on-line graphs. The numbering of the
graphs has the single graph on the Single Graph tab of the Test Display window as Graph
number 1, the upper and lower graphs on the Double Graph tab are graphs 2 and 3 respectively.

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Running a Test

The options for each graph are contained in


three dropdown boxes. The dropdown boxes
for each graph control which parameter is
displayed along each axis.

From the list of

parameters within each dropdown box select


the required parameter. If a second Y-axis is
not required select None. When the required
parameters are all selected for each test press
OK.

Customising which parameters are displayed in


the Live Data Display is made using the Live
Test Data Options tab. Up to a maximum of 9
parameters may be selected at any given time.

Once selection of the required parameters has


been made the OK button should clicked.

If changes have been made in error the original


configuration is retained if the Cancel button is
selected.

The user may zoom into any area of the graph by holding down the SHIFT key and dragging the
mouse (left button depressed) to form a rectangle onto the required area of the graph. This will
cause the graph to enlarge the user-selected rectangular area. To return the graph back to its
un-zoomed state simply press R on the keyboard.

3.9 Commencing a test


When the user is satisfied that all of the settings are correct and the test is ready to commence
the Start Test button in the test control panel should be clicked.

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Running a Test

GDSLAB Graphical Environment

Overview
4

THE GDSLAB GRAPHICAL ENVIRONMENT ..................................................... 2

4.1
The GDSLAB Tool Bar .............................................................................................................................2
4.1.1
GDSLAB Management Utilities .......................................................................................................3
4.2

The Top Menu Bar......................................................................................................................................4

4.3

Test Display Area .......................................................................................................................................4

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4-1

Graphical Environment

4 The GDSLAB Graphical Environment


After following the installation procedure outlined in Chapter 2 the GDSLAB program group
should now appear in the Windows Start Menu.

To run GDSLAB click once on the Start Button, select the Programs Menu, then select the
GDSLAB item.

After the program has been loaded the GDSLAB graphical environment will be displayed

Menu Bar
GDSLAB
Toolbar
Test Display Area

The GDSLAB environment is the basis for all testing with GDSLAB.

The GDSLAB environment is made up of three areas:

The GDSLAB Toolbar

The Menu Bar

Test Display Area

4.1 The GDSLAB Tool Bar


The Scrolling Toolbar on the left-hand side of the screen will always be available whilst GDSLAB
is running. It represents a means that will always be in view of navigating between stations and
management utilities. The toolbar displays two different toolbar sections as follows:

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4-2

Graphical Environment

Test Stations
The test stations tool bar displays configured and non-configured stations. In
this mode any station may be accessed by clicking on the station icon. A
context sensitive menu will appear to give you available options for your
station at all times i.e the contents of the menu will depend on the current
status of the selected test station.

Management
The Management toolbar contains the GDSLAB management utilities.

The menu displayed by the scrolling toolbar may be changed between the Test Stations and the
Management toolbars by clicking the respective buttons on the toolbar. (If the Test Stations
toolbar is currently on display, the button to display the Management toolbar will be at the bottom
of the scrolling toolbar).

4.1.1 GDSLAB Management Utilities


The GDSLAB graphical environment has in-built Management Utilities.

The Management

Utilities allow configuration of hardware, test station management and station security options to
be modified. Further details on the management utilities appears in chapter 5.

GDSLAB management utilities are accessible through the Scrolling toolbar under the
Management heading.

The standard utilities that are included are listed below:

Object Display

Displays the current station configuration for any given station.


Readings may be taken from configured transducers and control
parameters may be set.

Visual Planner

Allows the user to create their own hardware initialisation files.


Currently unavailable.

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4-3

Graphical Environment

Station Security

Passwords maybe set to stop accidental changes to the station


configurations.

Object Manager

An auxiliary utility for the installation and manipulation of existing and


new GDSLAB modules. For details regarding the object manager
see Chapter 4.

4.2 The Top Menu Bar


The GDSLAB Menu Bar is operated in the same manner as standard Windows menus. The
menu headings available are:

File
The File menu allows addition of new test stations

Selecting Quit will shut down GDSLAB completely. If


a test is currently being run this must be stopped
prior to using the Quit command.

Windows
Standard to most Windows programs this menu item allows manipulation of
the open windows.

Help Access to on-line help files (may not be available in early releases of
GDSLAB).

4.3 Test Display Area


The GDSLAB test display area is where all the action is. Configuration of tests, running tests and
displaying tests all occurs within the test display area.

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Graphical Environment

Configuring your Station Hardware

The GDSLAB environment can be configured to control all GDS laboratory products and most
products from other manufacturers. This chapter demonstrates the configuration of your test
station using the GDSLAB management utilities.

Overview
5

CONFIGURING YOUR TEST STATION ............................................................... 2

5.1

The Object Display.....................................................................................................................................2

5.2

The Visual Planner.....................................................................................................................................7

5.3

Hardware Device Modules......................................................................................................................7

5.4

Common Hardware Communication Parameters........................................................................7

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5-1

Configuring Station Hardware

5 Configuring your Test Station


From the GDSLAB toolbar (under management) appear tools for configuring your test station as
follows:

From the GDS Toolbar select the Management Group. The management
Group contains the following items:

Object Display.

Station (Stn) Manager

Visual Planner

Security

Object Manager

5.1 The Object Display


The object display allows configured test stations to be viewed, hardware settings to be
configured and transducers to be setup for use.

When the Object Display item is selected from the Management group a schematic diagram of
the current station configuration is displayed.

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5-2

Configuring Station Hardware

The Object Display graphically represents the configuration of the selected station. Where
possible, a digital picture of the instrument will be displayed. Other pictures include the
Transducer object and the Control Parameter object explained below:

Transducer
The transducer connected to an instrument represents a single channel or
property of an instrument that may be read or from which data can be acquired.
This value may represent the single channel of a multi-channel instrument. I.e.
read value of cell pressure.

Control Parameter
The control parameter represents a single channel or property of an instrument
that may be controlled. i.e. application of cell pressure.

5.1.1 The User Toolbar (Object Display)


The functionality of the Object display is principally contained in the User Toolbar

View Transducer Objects


View Control Parameters

Read Transducer Objects


Exit the Object Viewer

Station Selection Buttons

Using the User Toolbar the display of the station layout plan maybe altered to either show the
Transducer Objects or the Control Parameter Objects. This may be selected using the View
Transducer Objects button or the View Control Parameter Objects button.

The schematic layout of other stations configured may be reviewed using the Station Selection
buttons.

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Configuring Station Hardware

5.1.2 The Station Hardware Layout (Object Display)


The Station Layout is divided into three sections, Transducer and Control Parameters,
Acquisition Devices and Control Devices and Computer Connection Devices.

Transducer or
Control Objects

Acquisition
and Control

Computer Connection
Devices

By clicking on any of the devices within the object display, information about this device will
appear. Depending on the hardware arrangement, this may simply be an information box, or a
box where comms (communications) settings must be entered (e.g. RS232 or IEEE parameters).
These parameters must match the settings expected by the hardware. Refer to the
manufacturers hardware instructions for required communications parameters (common RS232
parameters for devices appears at the end of this chapter).
Transducer Details

Comms settings

Assuming the hardware is connected to the system correctly, clicking on the EYE icon will bring
up the transducer details. It is important to enter the correct details in the ADVANCED tab such
as Transducer Full Scale, Decimal Places and Transducer Upper Limit. The calibration tab is also
important, where either a full calibration may be performed, or the transducer sensitivity is
entered.

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Configuring Station Hardware

5.1.3 Setting up your Transducers (Object Display)


The properties of Transducer objects may be accessed by clicking on the relevant icon.

From here the user may perform a read of the transducer.

The transducers channel and

hardware connectivity are set in the Hardware Configuration file and so cannot be altered at this
level of the program. Physical connections may only be adjusted within the Visual Planner.

To ensure the transducer reading is correct, a number of compulsory values must be entered in
the Advanced tab for the Transducer as below:

Units returned
Units returned depends on the acquisition device. Most acquisition devices (such as the GDS
Serial Pad) return units of mV (millivolts)

Transducer FSO (mV)


The transducer full scale output in mV should be entered here. On devices such as the GDS
Serial Pad the gain range will be automatically ranged to suit the transducer (actual gain
range used will be displayed in Actual Span Used).

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Configuring Station Hardware

Engineering Units
Units returned simply displays the user defined units for the transducer.

User defined Upper Limit


Fixed upper safety limit in engineering units of the transducer.

User defined Lower Limit


Fixed lower safety limit in engineering units of the transducer.

Number of decimal places


The number of decimal places used in the engineering units. If the device module knows the
limit on decimal places then the user will get a limited choice (i.e. GDS controller returns
3

volume change in mm therefore there is no choice for decimal places).

Actual Span Used


For user information only.

The gain range selected by the data logger (if selection is

automatic).

5.1.4 Transducer Calibrations (Object Display)


Transducer calibrations must be entered for each transducer from the Calibration Details tab.

The minimum compulsory value is to enter the


sensitivity value for the transducer. This will be in units
of engineering units/returned units. i.e. for a load cell
the sensitivity is commonly in units of kN/mV.

The transducer may also be calibrated from scratch by


pressing the Re-Calibrate button and following the onscreen wizard instructions.

When

transducer

has

been

configured

the

Transducer Name, Serial Number and the Last


Calibrated date should be entered.

The Change Transducer button can be used to change the transducer calibration *.cal file
specified for a particular transducer. This would be used for example when changing between
load cells in a system, where a calibration file has already been setup for both transducers.

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Configuring Station Hardware

5.1.5 Control Parameter Objects (Object Display)


The control parameter objects, when clicked, reveal a control parameter window. This allows the
user to set a single value on the associated control device. This is mainly used for initial setup of
a test.

5.2 The Visual Planner


The visual planner is used to configure your own hardware configuration files.

The Visual Planner is not available in the first Beta release of GDSLAB. Contact GDS if you
require any hardware changes to your setup. GDS will return the correct hardware initialisation
file to you by return of post or e-mail.

5.3 Hardware Device Modules


To allow different hardware devices to be configured under GDSLAB a hardware device module
must be used. The Hardware device modules act as interfaces between the GDS Lab software
and your hardware device.

Hardware device modules are available from GDS Instruments Ltd

5.4 Common Hardware Communication Parameters


When setting the communication parameters for devices connected via GDSLAB, the
communication settings within GDSLAB must match those set on the physical device. Below is a
quick reference list for the most common devices. Please refer to the manufacturers device
handbook if the settings for your device do not appear below:

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Configuring Station Hardware

GDS Standard Controller (RS232)


Baud = 4800
Parity = o (odd)
Data Bits = 8
Stop Bits = 2
GDS Advanced Controller (IEEE)
IEEE address to be set on controller identical to that set in software. To adjust IEEE
address on controller press RESET 0 1 on the controller.
GDS Advanced Serial Controller (RS232)
Baud = 4800
Data Bits = 8
Stop Bits = 2
The Parity may be set on the controller as either:
Parity = 0, 1 or 2 (none, odd or even).
To select the desired parity setting press the following keystrokes:
RESET 0

then choose either 0, 1 or 2.


GDS Serial Acquisition Pad (RS232)
Baud = 4800
Parity = n (none)
Data Bits = 8
Stop Bits = 2

WF Tritech 50
Baud = 9600
Parity = n (none)
Data Bits = 8
Stop Bits = 2

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5-8

Configuring Station Hardware

Test Control Modules

Overview
Due to the nature of the GDSLAB software, test modules may be installed to add functionality to
the GDSLAB kernel. This chapter therefore consists of only the test modules initially purchased.
These sections appear as section 6a, 6b, 6c etc.

The test modules chosen will depend on the types of tests required by the user. For a full list of
tests currently available visit www.gdsinstruments.com and follow the links to GDSLAB.

If the test manual you require does not feature within the section 6 of this manual, they may also
be downloaded from the same site. Alternatively, contact GDS Instruments directly for a hard
copy.

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Test Control Modules

6 Test Control Modules


Different Test Control Modules are required to enable the GDSLAB software to carry out more test
control.

Test Control Modules are available from GDS Instruments Ltd.

The currently available Test

control modules are listed below. Contact GDS Instruments or see www. gdsinstruments.com for
the latest list of available test modules.

Data Acquisition: manual section 6a

Satcon: manual section 6b

Standard Triaxial: manual section 6c

Permeability: manual section 6d

Unsaturated Testing: manual section 6e

Advanced Loading: manual section 6f

Stress Path Testing: manual section 6g

K0 Triaxial Testing: manual section 6h

Consolidation Logging: manual section 6i

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ii

Test Control Modules

Data Acquisition Test Module

6a

The Data Acquisition Test Control Module that is provided free of charge with GDS Lab allows
general data acquisition and data logging to be conducted for triaxial and other standard tests.
The Data Acquisition Test Control Module is suitable for use where none of the test hardware may
be computer controlled but general data acquisition is required.

Specific data formats are included for acquiring data during different standard triaxial tests
including, Saturation, Consolidation, UU, CU and CD

6.1

Test Procedure

From the Add Test Stage panel from within the Station Test Plan window select the Test Control
Module:

TriaxialAcquisition.dll

Click the Create New Test Stage button to open the Test Stage Details form.

Select the required test type, General acquisition, Saturation, Consolidation, UU CU or CD.

Further data may also be saved into the data file along with the specific data acquired under
computer control. For the above example, the manually set cell pressure and the back pressure
maybe included in the data file.

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6a- 1

Data Acquisition test module

When the test conditions have been entered the Next button reveals the data saving and
termination properties for the test. A maximum length for data acquisition may be input here. If
the maximum test length is left unchecked, the test will continue indefinitely, or until the user
manually ends the test.

The test details maybe reviewed using the Back and the Next Buttons

Once the test details are completed the test is added to the Test Plan by clicking the Add to Test
Plan button.

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6a- 2

Data Acquisition test module

SATCON Test Module

6b

(Saturation and Consolidation)

6.1 Available Tests

Saturation Ramp

B-Check (Skempton pore pressure parameter B)

Consolidation

6.2 Required Hardware

Two pressure sources

Volume Change measurement

Test Cell

6.3 Test Procedure


From the Add Test Stage panel from within the Station Test Plan window select the Test Control
Module:

Satcon.dll

Click the Create New Test Stage button to open the test stage details window.

Select the required test type, either Saturation Ramp, B-Check (Skempton pore pressure
parameter B) or Consolidation.

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6b-1

SATCON test module

6.3.1 Saturation Ramp


Saturation ramp allows you to independently increase or decrease the Cell Pressure and the Back
Pressure. The saturation ramp is used to steadily change the pressures in the system either
keeping a constant effective stress or change to a desired effective stress.

The saturation ramp setup screen (below) will display the current read Cell Pressure and Back
Pressure in the system. Enter the required target pressures for the Cell Pressure and the Back
Pressure along with the time for each device to reach these target pressures.

Click Next to proceed to the next stage (section 6.3.4)

6.3.2 B-Check
The B-Check is a pre-test to check that the specimen is sufficiently saturated by measuring the
Skempton pore water pressure parameter B. The cell pressure is increased to the specified value
whilst the back pressure remains on hold volume (i.e. the undrained state). The system compares
the change in pore pressure (u) caused by the increase in cell pressure (3). The value of B is
calculated as u/3.

The B-Check setup screen (below) will display the current read Cell Pressure and Back Pressure
in the system. Enter the required target pressure for the Cell Pressure.

The system will seek to the target pressure in the quickest time it can. If using a GDS controller,
this may take between 1 and 5 minutes depending on the size of the cell and the amount of air
within the water

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6b-2

SATCON test module

Click Next to proceed to the next stage (section 6.3.4)

6.3.3 Consolidation
Consolidation simply applies a constant Cell Pressure and a constant Back Pressure to the
sample whilst monitoring the volume change within the sample.

The Consolidation setup screen (below) will display the current read Cell Pressure and Back
Pressure in the system. Enter the required target pressure for the Cell Pressure and the Back
Pressure.

Click Next to proceed to the next stage (section 6.3.4)

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SATCON test module

6.3.4 Test Termination Screen


The final step in the test setup is the selection of the estimated test time.

End of Saturation Ramp


The test will stop (or go to the next stage if one exists) when the saturation ramp is complete.

End of Consolidation
If the user is performing a multistage consolidation, they may want the computer to detect the
end of consolidation. There is of course no perfect method for a PC to detect this, so the
program works on the assumption that over any 5 minute period, if the volume change within
3

the specimen is < 5 mm then consolidation is considered as complete.

Max Skempton B-Value


The test will stop (or go to the next stage if one exists) when it believes that the maximum
value for Skempton B has been obtained.

Hold Pressure at end of test


Checking this box will cause the last command set to pressure sources (where computer
control is possible) to be set to the final pressures. If the box remains unchecked, pressure
sources will be set to hold volume (where possible).

Maximum Test Length


If the user knows the exact length of time for the test then the maximum test length box
should be checked and the test time entered in minutes. If the box remains unchecked then
the test will continue until the user stops the test.

The test settings may be reviewed using the Back button. Once the test setup is satisfactory the
test should be added to the test plan.
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SATCON test module

Standard Triaxial Test Module

6c

(UU, CU, CD by constant rate of strain)

6.1 Available Tests

UU

CU

CD

6.2 Required Hardware

UU, CU
One Cell pressure source
Axial Strain Application (i.e. Bishop and Wesley Cell + volume change control, Load
Frame etc)

CD
One Cell pressure source
One Back pressure source
Axial Strain Application (i.e. Bishop and Wesley Cell + volume change control, Load
Frame etc)
Volume Change measurement

6.3 Test Procedure


From the Add Test Stage panel from within the Station Test Plan window select the Test Control
Module:

StandardTriaxial.dll

Click the Create New Test Stage button to open the test stage details form.

Select the required test type, either Unconsolidated Undrained, Consolidated Undrained or
Consolidated Drained. Then enter the requested parameters for the test type selected. Please
note that the loading velocity can be entered as being either positive or negative. If you enter the
loading velocity as negative you should be sure that the deviator stress on the test specimen will
not become negative. If you want the deviator stress to go negative (you want to carry out an
extension test) then please make sure that you are using the extension top-cap. If you are using
negative loading velocity you will probably also want to enter a minimum strain value for test
termination see 6.3.5 below.
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6c-1

Standard Triaxial test module

6.3.1 Unconsolidated Undrained


Unconsolidated Undrained provides the control for the shearing stage of the UU test. Constant
control is maintained for the Cell Pressure while the axial velocity is maintained.

The Unconsolidated Undrained setup screen (below) will display the current read Cell Pressure in
the system. Enter the required target pressure for the Cell Pressure and the velocity for the strain
rate (mm/hr).

Click Next to proceed to the next stage (section 6.3.4)

6.3.2 Consolidated Undrained


Consolidated Undrained provides the control for the shearing stage of the CU test. Constant
control is maintained for the Cell Pressure while the axial velocity is maintained.

The Consolidated Undrained setup screen (below) will display the current read Cell Pressure in
the system. Enter the required target pressure for the Cell Pressure and the velocity for the strain
rate (mm/hr).

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6c-2

Standard Triaxial test module

Click Next to proceed to the next stage (section 6.3.4)

6.3.3 Consolidated Drained


Consolidated Drained provides the control for the shearing stage of the CD test. Constant control
is maintained for the Cell Pressure and Back Pressure while the axial velocity is maintained and
the back volume change is measured.

The Consolidated Drained setup screen (below) will display the current read Cell Pressure and
Back Pressure in the system. Enter the required target pressure for the Cell Pressure and the
Back Pressure along with the velocity for the strain rate (mm/hr).

Click Next to proceed to the next stage (section 6.3.4)

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Standard Triaxial test module

6.3.4 Test Termination Screen


The final step in the test setup is the selection of the estimated test time/termination options for
the test.

Maximum Axial Load


The user may enter a maximum limit for the axial load at which point the test will stop.

Maximum Test Length


If the user knows the exact length of time for the test then the maximum test length box
should be checked and the test time entered in minutes. If the box remains unchecked then
the test will continue until the user stops the test.

Maximum Axial Strain


The user may enter a maximum limit for the axial strain at which point the test will stop. If you
use this parameter the loading velocity will be positive.

Minimum Axial Strain


The user may enter a minimum limit for the axial strain at which point the test will stop (more
commonly used when unloading a specimen i.e the loading velocity will be negative).

Max Deviator Stress


The user may want the computer to detect the maximum deviator stress of the test. There is
of course no perfect method for a PC to detect this, so the program works on the assumption
that over any 4 consecutive readings of deviator stress, the most recent reading is the same

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6c-4

Standard Triaxial test module

or lower than the previous one. The maximum deviator stress will then be terminated when
th

rd

the 4 reading is less than the 3 .

Max Stress Ratio


The user may want the computer to detect the maximum stress ratio of the test. There is of
course no perfect method for a PC to detect this, so the program works on the assumption
that over any 4 consecutive readings of deviator stress, the most recent reading is the same
or lower than the previous one. The maximum stress ratio will then be terminated when the
th

rd

4 reading is less than the 3 .

Hold Pressure at end of test


Checking this box will cause the last command set to pressure sources (where computer
control is possible) to be set to the final pressures. If the box remains unchecked, pressure
sources will be set to hold volume (where possible).

The test settings may be reviewed using the Back button.

Once the test setup is satisfactory the test should be added to the test plan.

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6c-5

Standard Triaxial test module

6d

Permeability Test Module


6.1 Available Tests

Constant Head Permeability

Constant rate of flow Permeability

6.2 Required Hardware

Three pressure sources

Test Cell

6.3 Optional Hardware

Wet / Wet differential pressure transducer

Mid-plane Pore pressure transducer

6.4 Test Procedure


From the Add Test Stage panel from within the Station Test Plan window select the Test Control
Module:

Permeability.dll

Click the Create New Test Stage button to open the test stage details form.
Select the required test type, either Constant head permeability of Constant Flow Permeability.

6.4.1 Constant Head Test


The constant head test simply maintains a constant differential in pressure between the top and
the base of the specimen (top pressure is always set higher than the base pressure). The flow is
then measured on the top controller and the base controller.

Enter the required target pressures for the top pressure and the required pressure differential
between the top pressure and the back pressure. Also enter the cell pressure that will be used for
the test.

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6d-1

Permeability Test Module

Click Next to proceed to the next stage (section 6.4.3)

6.4.2 Constant rate of Flow Test


The constant rate of flow test simply maintains a constant base pressure whilst applying a
constant flow through the top of the specimen. A maximum hydraulic gradient can ve set which
will pause the rate of flow if the pressure differential between the top and the base of the sample
gets too large.

Enter the required target pressures for the cell pressure, top flow rate and the required base
pressure. The maximum hydraulic gradient will be the maximum difference between the top and
base pressures.

Click Next to proceed to the next stage (section 6.4.3)

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6d-2

Permeability Test Module

6.4.3 Test Termination Screen


The final step in the test setup is the selection of the estimated test time.

If the test is to be carried out for a finite amount of time this should be entered.

If the test is to run until user intervention to end the test select Do not terminate test.
The test settings may be reviewed using the Back button.

Once the test setup is satisfactory the test should be added to the test plan.

6.5 Using the Triaxial permeability Test Control Module with a


Wet / Wet differential pressure transducer
The Wet / Wet differential pressure transducer should be connected to the base pressure
controller.

The use of a Wet / Wet differential pressure transducer allows constant head

permeability tests to be conducted using small (typically <5kPa) pressure differential between the
specimen top pressure and the base pressure.

6.5.1 Hardware Setup


The test setup used will depend on the hardware available to GDSLAB to be configured into the
Test station. The example below shows a simple two-pressure source system. A third pressure
source could be added as a confining pressure. The example also demonstrates the inclusion of

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6d-3

Permeability Test Module

a Wet / Wet differential pressure transducer to regulate the pressure difference between the top
and base of the sample.

Hydraulic connections
Hydraulic connections*
Remote feedback*
IEEE Connections

* Only present if wet / wet differential pressure transducer used

6.5.2 Sign Convention


The convention for using the Wet-Wet differential pressure device within the GDSLAB software is
so that the output read from the pressure transducer reads from the point of view of the device it
has control over.
For example, if the wet-wet pressure transducer is being used as a Remote Feedback Module on
a BASE pressure controller, and it is being used to target some constant pressure BELOW that of
a TOP pressure controller, the reading (and therefore target) of the Wet-Wet transducer will
represent BASE Pressure TOP Pressure. This will therefore generally give a negative number.
i.e.
TOP Pressure Reading = 200 kPa

Wet

Wet

Pressure

Reading = 100 kPa

BASE Pressure Reading = 100 kPa

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6d-4

Permeability Test Module

4D Unsaturated Stress/Strain
Path Module

6e

(Generalised Unsaturated Soil Testing)

6.1 Available Tests

Stress Path
Provides independent linear control of Axial Stress, Radial Stress, Pore Air Pressure and Pore
Water Pressure.

Strain Path
Provides independent linear control of Axial Strain, Radial Stress, Pore Air Pressure and Pore
Water Pressure.

6.2 Required Hardware

Stress/Strain Path
Axial Stress/Strain Control/Acquisition (i.e. Bishop and Wesley Cell + volume change
control, Load Frame etc)
Radial Stress Control/Acquisition
Pore Air Pressure Control/Acquisition
Pore Water Pressure Control/Acquisition

Optional Hardware
Independent measurement of atmospheric pressure
Independent measurement of Temperature

6.3 Test Procedure


From the Add Test Stage panel from within the Station Test Plan window select the Test Control
Module:

4DUNSAT .dll

Click the Create New Test Stage button to open the test stage details form.

Select the required test type, either Axial Stress Controlled or Axial Strain Controlled.

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6e-1

4D Unsaturated Stress/Strain Paths

6.3.1 Axial Stress Control


The 4D Stress/Strain Path setup screen (below) will display the current read values in yellow
boxes. The test type (either Axial Stress Control or Axial Strain Control) is selected form the Test
Type drop down menu. The default test is Axial Stress Control, as can be seen below.

Enter the required target Axial Stress (a), Radial Stress (r), Pore Air Pressure (Ua) and Pore
Water Pressure (Uw) for the test (all in kPa). Then set the length of time to reach the targets in
minutes.

Note: The test will attempt to perform linear stress paths between the current values and the
target values.

The software will always attempt to maintain the path set by the user, but in

addition will slow the test down if any one of the set parameters is performing too slowly. This is
particularly crucial in unsaturated soil testing where the air pressure controller requires relatively
large volume changes to achieve a change in pressure, and is therefore much slower to seek to a
target pressure that say a similar device filled with water. Part of the reason for this is to ensure
the pore air pressure is greater than the pore water pressure at all times thus ensuring the
integrity of the high air entry porous stone.

Click Next to proceed to the next stage (section 6.3.3)

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6e-2

4D Unsaturated Stress/Strain Paths

6.3.2 Axial Strain Control


Axial Strain Control may be selected form the Test Type drop down menu. The Axial Strain
Control test setup screen is shown below.

Enter the required target Axial Strain ( a), Radial Stress (r), Pore Air Pressure (Ua) and Pore
Water Pressure (Uw) for the test (all in kPa). Then set the length of time to reach the targets in
minutes.

Click Next to proceed to the next stage (section 6.3.3)

6.3.3 Test Termination Screen


The next step in the test setup is the selection of the estimated test time/termination options for
the test.

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6e-3

4D Unsaturated Stress/Strain Paths

Maximum Axial Load


The user may enter a maximum limit for the axial load at which point the test will stop.

Maximum Test Length


If the user knows the exact length of time for the test then the maximum test length box
should be checked and the test time entered in minutes. If the box remains unchecked then
the test will continue until the user stops the test.

Maximum Axial Strain


The user may enter a maximum limit for the axial strain at which point the test will stop.

Minimum Axial Strain


The user may enter a minimum limit for the axial strain at which point the test will stop (more
commonly used when unloading a specimen).

Max Deviator Stress


The user may want the computer to detect the maximum deviator stress of the test. There is
of course no perfect method for a PC to detect this, so the program works on the assumption
that over any 4 consecutive readings of deviator stress, the most recent reading is the same
or lower than the previous one. The maximum deviator stress will then be terminated when
th

rd

the 4 reading is less than the 3 .

Max Stress Ratio


The user may want the computer to detect the maximum stress ratio of the test. There is of
course no perfect method for a PC to detect this, so the program works on the assumption
that over any 4 consecutive readings of deviator stress, the most recent reading is the same
or lower than the previous one. The maximum stress ratio will then be terminated when the
th

rd

4 reading is less than the 3 .

Hold Pressure at end of test


Checking this box will cause the last command set to pressure sources (where computer
control is possible) to be set to the final pressures. If the box remains unchecked, pressure
sources will be set to hold volume (where possible).

The test settings may be reviewed using the Back button.

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4D Unsaturated Stress/Strain Paths

6.3.4 Unsaturated Test Parameters Screen


The final step in the test setup is the insertion of any parameters specific and essential to an
unsaturated test. Any values that have not been selected with in the test specimen details can be
added now.

Notes:
Volume of air in Controller
This is an estimate of the volume of air currently in the GDS air pressure controller. Ideally the
test should be started with the air pressure controller completely FULL, whereby the total air
volume should be known (all air pressure controllers shipped in 2000 should have a label
specifying the total volume air capacity when full this includes the dead space at the end of the
controller beyond the piston stroke.

Volume of air in Pipes


This is an estimate of the volume of air in all pipes between the air pressure controller and the
specimen.

Atmospheric Air Pressure


If an atmospheric air pressure transducer exists, the the reading will be taken from this
accordingly. If it does not exist, a value may be entered here. If no value is entered, a default
value of 100kPa is assumed.

Once the test setup is satisfactory the test should be added to the test plan.

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4D Unsaturated Stress/Strain Paths

specifying the total volume air capacity when full this includes the dead space at the end of the
controller beyond the piston stroke.

Volume of air in Pipes


This is an estimate of the volume of air in all pipes between the air pressure controller and the
specimen.

Atmospheric Air Pressure


If an atmospheric air pressure transducer exists, the the reading will be taken from this
accordingly. If it does not exist, a value may be entered here. If no value is entered, a default
value of 100kPa is assumed.

Once the test setup is satisfactory the test should be added to the test plan.

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4D Unsaturated Stress/Strain Paths

Standard Consolidation (Hydrocon


/Rowe and Bardon Cell) Module

6f

(Stepped Loading, Constant Rate of Strain and Constant Rate of Loading).

6.1 Available Tests

Stepped Loading

CRS (Constant Rate of Strain)

CRL (Constant Rate of Loading)

6.2 Required Hardware

Axial Stress (Upper Chamber) control and acquisition.


Back Pressure control and acquisition.
Back volume control and acquisition.

Then either
Axial Displacement as measured by Upper Chamber volume change,
or

Axial Displacement as measure by an external displacement transducer.

Optional
Independent measurement of Pore Pressure.

6.3 Test Procedure


From the Add Test Stage panel from within the Station Test Plan window select the Test Control
Module:

StandardHydrocon.dll

Click the Create New Test Stage button to open the test stage details form.

Select the required test type, either Unconsolidated Undrained, Consolidated Undrained or
Consolidated Drained.

6.3.1 Stepped Loading


Stepped Loading provides a means to increase the specimen axial load, whilst maintaining a
constant back pressure and measuring the back (pore) volume change.

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Standard Hydrocon test module

The Stepped Loading setup screen (below) will display the current read Axial Load and Back
Pressure in the system. Enter the required target values for Axial Load and Back Pressure.

Click Next to proceed to the next stage (section 6.3.4)

6.3.2 Constant Rate of Strain (CRS)


CRS provides a constrolled ramp of strain while the Back Pressure is maintained.

The Consolidated Undrained setup screen (below) will display the current read Axial Strain and
Back Pressure in the system. Enter the target Axial Strain and Back pressure along with the
required time for the strain to reach its target. The Back Pressure will go immediately to its target,
while the strain will maintain a ramp.

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Standard Hydrocon test module

Note: with Stress/strain ramps, the system will always try to maintain the velocity the user sets. If
however the value set is actually faster then the attached hardware can perform, the test will
automatically slow to an appropriate rate.

Click Next to proceed to the next stage (section 6.3.4)

6.3.3 Constant Rate of Load (CRL)


Constant Rate of Load works in a similar way to the Constant Rate of Strain, except of course the
Load is ramped instead of the axial strain.

The CRL setup screen (below) will display the current read Axial Load and Back Pressure in the
system.

Click Next to proceed to the next stage (section 6.3.4)

6.3.4 Start of Stage Options screen


If the specimen has just been docked, checking the set displacement to zero will set a software
zero on the displacement transducer. This is generally ONLY done when the specimen has first
been docked i.e the first time the specimen comes in contact with the ram.

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Standard Hydrocon test module

6.3.5 Test Termination Screen


The final step in the test setup is the selection of the estimated test time/termination options for
the test.

Terminate when ramp target is achieved


When a CRS or CRL test has been selected, this option may will cause the test to terminate
(or go to the next configured stage) when the required ramp is complete.

Maximum Axial Load


The user may enter a maximum limit for the axial load at which point the test will stop.

Maximum Test Length


If the user knows the exact length of time for the test then the maximum test length box
should be checked and the test time entered in minutes. If the box remains unchecked then
the test will continue until the user stops the test.

Maximum Axial Strain


The user may enter a maximum limit for the axial strain at which point the test will stop.

Minimum Axial Strain


The user may enter a minimum limit for the axial strain at which point the test will stop (more
commonly used when unloading a specimen).
or lower than the previous one. The maximum deviator stress will then be terminated when
th

rd

the 4 reading is less than the 3 .

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Standard Hydrocon test module

Hold Pressure at end of test


Checking this box will cause the last command set to pressure sources (where computer
control is possible) to be set to the final pressures. If the box remains unchecked, pressure
sources will be set to hold volume (where possible).

The test settings may be reviewed using the Back button.

Once the test setup is satisfactory the test should be added to the test plan.

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Standard Hydrocon test module

6g

Stress Path Module


(Generalised p, q & s, t stress path module)

6.1 Available Tests

p, q Stress Path
Provides independent linear control of Deviator Stress, q, and Cambridge p, where:

q = 1 - 3
and

p = ( 1 +(2 x 3))/3
where

1 = axial stress
3 = radial stress

s, t Stress Path
Provides independent linear control of Max. Shear Stress, t, and Mean Stress, s, where:

t = (1 - 3)/2
and

s = ( 1 + 3)/2
where

1 = axial stress
3 = radial stress

6.2 Required Hardware

Stress Path (p,q or s,t)


Axial Stress Control/Acquisition (i.e. Bishop and Wesley Cell + volume change control,
Load Frame etc)
Radial Stress Control/Acquisition
Pore Water Pressure Control/Acquisition

6.3 Test Procedure


From the Add Test Stage panel from within the Station Test Plan window select the Test Control
Module:
StressPath.dll

Click the Create New Test Stage button to open the test stage details form. Select the required
test type, either p,q or s,t.
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Stress Paths

6.3.1 p, q Stress Path


The p,q Stress Path setup screen (below) will display the current read values in yellow boxes.
The test type (either Stress Path p,q or Stress Path s,t) is selected form the Test Type drop down
menu. The default test is Stress Path p,q, as can be seen below.

Enter the required target Deviator Stress (q2) and Cambridge p (p2) for the test (both in kPa).
Then set the length of time to reach the targets in minutes.

Note: The test will attempt to perform linear stress paths between the current values and the
target values.

The software will always attempt to maintain the path set by the user, but in

addition will slow the test down if any one of the set parameters is performing too slowly.

Click Next to proceed to the next stage (section 6.3.3)

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Stress Paths

6.3.2 s,t Stress Path


Stress path (s, t) may be selected form the Test Type drop down menu. The s, t test setup
screen is shown below.

Enter the required target s (s2) and the target t (t2) for the test (all in kPa). Then set the length of
time to reach the targets in minutes.

Click Next to proceed to the next stage (section 6.3.3)

6.3.3 Test Termination Screen


The next step in the test setup is the selection of the estimated test time/termination options for
the test.

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Stress Paths

Selected Stress Path Reaches Target


The current test will stop (or go to the next stage) when the selected stress path reaches its
targets.

Maximum Axial Load


The user may enter a maximum limit for the axial load at which point the test will stop.

Maximum Test Length


If the user knows the exact length of time for the test then the maximum test length box
should be checked and the test time entered in minutes. If the box remains unchecked then
the test will continue until the user stops the test.

Maximum Axial Strain


The user may enter a maximum limit for the axial strain at which point the test will stop.

Minimum Axial Strain


The user may enter a minimum limit for the axial strain at which point the test will stop (more
commonly used when unloading a specimen).

Max Deviator Stress


The user may want the computer to detect the maximum deviator stress of the test. There is
of course no perfect method for a PC to detect this, so the program works on the assumption
that over any 4 consecutive readings of deviator stress, the most recent reading is the same
or lower than the previous one. The maximum deviator stress will then be terminated when
th

rd

the 4 reading is less than the 3 .

Max Stress Ratio


The user may want the computer to detect the maximum stress ratio of the test. There is of
course no perfect method for a PC to detect this, so the program works on the assumption
that over any 4 consecutive readings of deviator stress, the most recent reading is the same
or lower than the previous one. The maximum stress ratio will then be terminated when the
th

rd

4 reading is less than the 3 .

Hold Pressure at end of test


Checking this box will cause the last command set to pressure sources (where computer
control is possible) to be set to the final pressures. If the box remains unchecked, pressure
sources will be set to hold volume (where possible).

The test settings may be reviewed using the Back button.

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Stress Paths

that over any 4 consecutive readings of deviator stress, the most recent reading is the same
or lower than the previous one. The maximum deviator stress will then be terminated when
th

rd

the 4 reading is less than the 3 .

Max Stress Ratio


The user may want the computer to detect the maximum stress ratio of the test. There is of
course no perfect method for a PC to detect this, so the program works on the assumption
that over any 4 consecutive readings of deviator stress, the most recent reading is the same
or lower than the previous one. The maximum stress ratio will then be terminated when the
th

rd

4 reading is less than the 3 .

Hold Pressure at end of test


Checking this box will cause the last command set to pressure sources (where computer
control is possible) to be set to the final pressures. If the box remains unchecked, pressure
sources will be set to hold volume (where possible).

The test settings may be reviewed using the Back button.

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Stress Paths

6h

Advanced Loading Module


6.1 Available Tests

Independent Control over the following Parameters:

Axial Load (kN)

Axial Stress (kPa)

Axial Deformation (mm)

Deviator Stress (kPa)

Control over the above parameters by:

Constant (maintain a target value)

Ramp (constant rate of change to a target value with time)

Sinusoidal (cyclic)

6.2 Required Hardware

Axial Load or Axial Deformation Control/Acquisition (i.e. Bishop and Wesley Cell + volume
change control, Load Frame etc)
Radial Stress Control/Acquisition
Back Pressure Control/Acquisition

6.3 Test Procedure


From the Add Test Stage panel from within the Station Test Plan window select the Test Control
Module:
AdvancedLoading.dll

Click the Create New Test Stage button to open the test stage details form.

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Advanced Loading

6.3.1 Advanced Loading Setup


The advanced loading setup screen (below) will display the current read values in yellow boxes.
The control type (constant, ramp, sinusoidal or hold volume) is selected for each parameter
accordingly. The example below shows the cell pressure set to a constant 430 kPa, the back
pressure to ramp from 320 to 400 kPa over 20 minutes and the axial control to cycle +/- 1mm
around a 1.5mm datum with a period of 30 minutes (i.e. 30 minutes for 1 wavelength).

Required targets will change according to which control type has been chosen for the parameter.

Click Next to proceed to the next stage (section 6.3.2)

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Advanced Loading

6.3.2 Test Termination Screen


The next step in the test setup is the selection of the estimated test time/termination options for
the test.

Maximum Axial Load


The user may enter a maximum limit for the axial load at which point the test will stop.

Maximum Test Length


If the user knows the exact length of time for the test then the maximum test length box
should be checked and the test time entered in minutes. If the box remains unchecked then
the test will continue until the user stops the test.

Maximum Axial Strain


The user may enter a maximum limit for the axial strain at which point the test will stop.

Minimum Axial Strain


The user may enter a minimum limit for the axial strain at which point the test will stop (more
commonly used when unloading a specimen).

Max Deviator Stress


The user may want the computer to detect the maximum deviator stress of the test. There is
of course no perfect method for a PC to detect this, so the program works on the assumption
that over any 4 consecutive readings of deviator stress, the most recent reading is the same
or lower than the previous one. The maximum deviator stress will then be terminated when
th

rd

the 4 reading is less than the 3 .

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Advanced Loading

Max Stress Ratio


The user may want the computer to detect the maximum stress ratio of the test. There is of
course no perfect method for a PC to detect this, so the program works on the assumption
that over any 4 consecutive readings of deviator stress, the most recent reading is the same
or lower than the previous one. The maximum stress ratio will then be terminated when the
th

rd

4 reading is less than the 3 .

Hold Pressure at end of test


Checking this box will cause the last command set to pressure sources (where computer
control is possible) to be set to the final pressures. If the box remains unchecked, pressure
sources will be set to hold volume (where possible).

The test settings may be reviewed using the Back button.

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Advanced Loading

K0 Consolidation Module

6i

6.1 Available Tests

Test 1: Kzero using ramp RADIAL STRESS with direct radial transducer measurement:
Uses a direct reading of the specimen diameter to enable the test control to maintain zero
diameter change.

Test 2: Kzero using ramp RADIAL STRESS with back volume change measurement:
Uses the change in volume of the specimen to calculate a theoretical new specimen height
thus ensuring the diameter change remains zero.

6.2 Required Hardware

Axial Load or Axial Deformation Control/Acquisition (i.e. Bishop and Wesley Cell + volume
change control, Load Frame etc)
Radial Stress Control/Acquisition
Back Pressure and Volume Control/Acquisition

Optional Items

Radial direct measurement device (i.e. Radial Hall Effect caliper) must be used when
performing Kzero using direct radial transducer.

6.3 Test Procedure


From the Add Test Stage panel from within the Station Test Plan window select the Test Control
Module:
Kzero.dll

Click the Create New Test Stage button to open the test stage details form.

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6i-1

K0

6.3.1 Test 1: Kzero using ramp RADIAL STRESS with direct


radial transducer measurement
The Kzero using direct radial transducer setup screen (below) will display the current read values
in yellow boxes. The test type (either by Direct Radial Transducer or Back Volume Change) is
selected form the Test Type drop down menu. The default test is Kzero using Direct Radial
Transducer, as can be seen below.

Current read values appropriate to your test are displayed in yellow text boxes. Enter the required
target value for Radial Stress and set the length of time to reach this target in minutes. During the
test, the axial displacement of the sample will be slowly adjusted thus ensuring the diameter of the
specimen remains constant, where the sample diameter change is measured directly from a radial
transducer.

Click Next to proceed to the next stage (section 6.3.5)

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K0

6.3.2 Test 2: Kzero using ramp RADIAL STRESS with back


volume change measurement
The Kzero using back volume change setup screen can be seen below.

Again, current read values appropriate to your test are displayed in yellow text boxes. Enter the
required target value for Radial Stress and set the length of time to reach this target in minutes.
During the test, the axial displacement of the sample will be slowly adjusted thus ensuring the
diameter of the specimen remains constant, where the specimen diameter change is calculated
from the back pressure volume change.

Click Next to proceed to the next stage (section 6.3.5)

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K0

6.3.3 Test Termination Screen


The next step in the test setup is the selection of the estimated test time/termination options for
the test.

Maximum Axial Load


The user may enter a maximum limit for the axial load at which point the test will stop.

Maximum Test Length


If the user knows the exact length of time for the test then the maximum test length box
should be checked and the test time entered in minutes. If the box remains unchecked then
the test will continue until the user stops the test.

Maximum Axial Strain


The user may enter a maximum limit for the axial strain at which point the test will stop.

Minimum Axial Strain


The user may enter a minimum limit for the axial strain at which point the test will stop (more
commonly used when unloading a specimen).

Max Deviator Stress


The user may want the computer to detect the maximum deviator stress of the test. There is
of course no perfect method for a PC to detect this, so the program works on the assumption
that over any 4 consecutive readings of deviator stress, the most recent reading is the same
or lower than the previous one. The maximum deviator stress will then be terminated when
th

rd

the 4 reading is less than the 3 .


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K0

Max Stress Ratio


The user may want the computer to detect the maximum stress ratio of the test. There is of
course no perfect method for a PC to detect this, so the program works on the assumption
that over any 4 consecutive readings of deviator stress, the most recent reading is the same
or lower than the previous one. The maximum stress ratio will then be terminated when the
th

rd

4 reading is less than the 3 .

Hold Pressure at end of test


Checking this box will cause the last command set to pressure sources (where computer
control is possible) to be set to the final pressures. If the box remains unchecked, pressure
sources will be set to hold volume (where possible).

The test settings may be reviewed using the Back button.

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K0

Simple Shear Box Module

6j

6.1 Available Tests

Test 1: Shear Box:


Uses a digital control box connected to a simple shear machine to control axial motion of the
shear box.

6.2 Required Hardware

Simple Shear Box machine connected to a Control Box (DIO Box) - Control/Acquisition
Datalogger - Acquisition

6.3 Test Procedure


From the Add Test Stage panel from within the Station Test Plan window select the Test Control
Module:
Shear_Box.dll

Click the Create New Test Stage button to open the test stage details form.

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Shear Box

6.3.1 Test 1: Shear Box


The Shear Box setup screen (below) will display the current read values in yellow boxes. There is
only one test type which is Shear Box.

Current read values appropriate to your test are displayed in yellow text boxes. Enter the required
target value for Shear Box Velocity. During the test, the axial displacement remains constant at
the specified value if the machine is capable of setting a specific velocity, or else just moves at
whatever constant velocity the machine is capable of.

Click Next to proceed to the next stage (section 6.3.5)

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Shear Box

6.3.2 Start of Stage Options screen


Checking the set displacement to zero will set a software zero on the horizontal displacement
transducer at the start of the test stage.

6.3.3 Test Termination Screen


The next step in the test setup is the selection of the estimated test time/termination options for
the test.

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Shear Box

Linear / Cyclic
The user may set whether the test will be a linear displacement ramp or run as a cyclic test
with a triangular waveform.

Minimum Horizontal Strain


The user may enter a minimum horizontal strain limit for the axial displacement at which the
test will stop if carrying out a linear test, or switch direction if carrying out a cyclic test.

Maximum Horizontal Strain


The user may enter a maximum horizontal strain limit for the axial displacement at which the
test will stop if carrying out a linear test, or switch direction if carrying out a cyclic test.

Maximum Horizontal Load


The user may enter a maximum limit for the horizontal load at which point the test will stop.

Maximum Test Length


The user may set a maximum test length at which the test stage will stop.

Go to Next Stage Automatically / Wait for User Interaction


The user can set whether the computer will automatically proceed with the next test stage
upon test termination or whether the computer will wait for the user to select the next stage.

The test settings may be reviewed using the Back button.

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Shear Box

DYNTTS Dynamic Triaxial Testing

6k

6.1 Available Tests

Test 1: Dynamic Cyclic test with displacement control:


High speed direct cyclic testing with control from displacement and constant cell and back
pressure.

Test 2: Dynamic Cyclic test with load control:


High speed direct cyclic testing with control from the axial load and constant cell and back
pressure.

6.2 Required Hardware

Dynamic Axial Force/Displacement Control/Acquisition


Cell Pressure Control/Acquisition

6.3 Test Procedure


From the Add Test Stage panel from within the Station Test Plan window select the Test Control
Module:
Dynamic_Loading.dll

Click the Create New Test Stage button to open the test stage details form.

Select the required test type, either Dynamic Cyclic with Load Control or Dynamic Cyclic with
Displacement Control.

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Dynamic Cyclic Triaxial

6.3.1 Dynamic Cyclic with Displacement Control


Dynamic Cyclic with Displacement Control provides a means to cyclically control the axial
displacement at high frequency, whilst maintaining a constant cell pressure.

The Dynamic Cyclic (Displacement) setup screen (below) will display the current read Axial
Displacement Datum and the current Cell Pressure in the system. Enter the required target Axial
Displacement Datum and Amplitude and the Cyclic Frequency. Also enter the required target Cell
Pressure.

Click Next to proceed to the next stage (section 6.3.3)

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Dynamic Cyclic Triaxial

6.3.2 Dynamic Cyclic with Load Control


Dynamic Cyclic with Load Control provides a means to cyclically control the axial load at high
frequency, whilst maintaining a constant cell pressure.

The Dynamic Cyclic (Load) setup screen (below) will display the current read Axial Load Datum,
and the current Cell Pressure in the system. Enter the required target Axial Load Datum and
Amplitude and the Cyclic Frequency. Also enter the required target Cell Pressure.

Click Next to proceed to the next stage (section 6.3.3)

Important: Stiffness Estimate


If the test is a load controlled test you will then be asked for an estimate of the load stiffness in
kN/mm. This is used to set the servo loop gain for load control. If the value you choose is too low
the system could start oscillating. You will know if this occurs because the system will make an
unpleasant deep vibrating noise. You should press the abort button immediately.

You will need experience of the system (and your specimen) to gauge the correct value for this
parameter. A simple procedure is as follows:- First carry out a static cyclic test (1 cycle) using the
same force datum and amplitude that you wish to use in the dynamic mode. Using this data you
can estimate the average kN/mm value (x say) for this test specimen. Then carry out a dynamic
cyclic test, again with only one or two cycles, using a stiffness value of 5x. Then examine the
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Dynamic Cyclic Triaxial

waveform of force against time, if it is poor (not reaching targets or not a nice neat sinusoidal
shape) then carry out another dynamic cyclic test using a stiffness value half of the previous value
(this will make the system more responsive) and check the waveform again.

Repeat this procedure until the waveform looks good and you are meeting the required load
amplitude. If at any time the waveform starts to overshoot at various points in the cycle your
stiffness value is too low - you should then double the last stiffness value you used. If you chose
the lower stiffness value because the waveform was not good enough then the frequency you are
using is too high so use the higher stiffness value and halve the frequency.

Please note that the stiffness value is ignored for displacement controlled tests.

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Dynamic Cyclic Triaxial

6.3.3 Test Termination Screen


The next step in the test setup is the selection of the estimated test time/termination options for
the test.

Total Cycles
Enter the number of cycles after which the test will stop.

Points per Cycle


Enter the number of points to be taken per cycle available options are 8, 16, 32 and 64
points.

Cycles On
Enter the number of cycles to log data for used in conjunction with Cycles Off, data will be
logged for the number of cycles specified as on and then will not log data for the number of
cycles specified as off. This will be repeated until the test stops. Please refer to your
hardware manual for the amount of data that the high speed data acquisition card will hold.
When performing a long test it is possible that the card will run out of memory if data from all
the cycles is saved.

Cycles Off
Enter the number of cycles to not log data for.

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Dynamic Cyclic Triaxial

Hold Pressure at end of test


Checking this box will cause the last command set to pressure sources (where computer
control is possible) to be set to the final pressures. If the box remains unchecked, pressure
sources will be set to hold volume (where possible).

The test settings may be reviewed using the Back button.

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Dynamic Cyclic Triaxial

Triaxial Calculation Module

Different Test Calculation Modules are required to enable the GDSLAB software to carry out
different types of test control. A test calculation module is required for each type of test for
example: triaxial, shearbox or oedometer.

For non-standard testing, for example, Unsaturated triaxial testing would require a test calculation
module extension. For information regarding which test calculation modules you require please
contact GDS.

A sample of the calculations made for the standard triaxial tests are given below.

7.1 Standard Triaxial Calculations


Average Radial Strain,

r (%)

Average Diameter Change x 100


Initial Diameter
Deviator Stress, q (kPa)
q = Axial Stress - Radial Stress
Stress Ratio
Axial Stress/Radial Stress
Specimen Area (mm3)

x (Do/2) 2 x Ho) + volume change

Ho - height change
Axial Stress,

a (kPa)

(Axial Force / Specimen Area) + Radial Stress


Effective Axial Stress,

a (kPa)

Axial Stress - Pore water pressure


Axial Strain (%)
(Axial deformation / Ho) x 100

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Triaxial Calculations

Average (Mean) Stress, s (kPa)


(Axial Stress + Radial Stress) / 2
Maximum Shear Stress, t (kPa)
Deviator Stress / 2
Shear Strain
(Axial Strain + Radial Strain) x 2/3
Average Effecti ve Stress (kPa)
(Effective Axial Stress + Effective Radial Stress) / 2

Cambridge p (kPa)
(Axial Stress + 2 x (Radial Stress)) / 3
Cambridge p (kPa)
Cambridge p - pore water pressure
Where:
Do = Initial sample diameter
Ho = Initial sample height.

7.2 UNSATURATED Triaxial Calculations


INITIAL VALUES

Initial Volume of Solids


(Dry Weight/Specific Gravity) x 1000

Initial Volume of Voids


Initial Volume Volume of Solids

Initial Degree of Saturation


(Initial Volume of Water / Initial Volume of Voids) * 100

Initial Volume of Water in Sample


Volume of Voids x (Initial Degree of Saturation / 100)

Initial Volume of Air in Sample


Volume of Voids x ((100-Initial Degree of Saturation) / 100)

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Triaxial Calculations

KRT (as in PV = kRT)


(Pore Air Pressure + Atmospheric Pressure) x (Volume of air in sample + Estimated Initial
Volume of air in Controller + Pore Air Controller Volume + Estimated Volume in Air Pipes)

UPDATED VALUES
Current Specimen Water Volume
Initial Volume of Water in Sample + Change in Back Volume

Total Air in System


KRT/(Pore Air Pressure + Atmospheric Pressure)

Current Specimen Air Volume


Total Air in System Air in Pipes Estimated Initial Air in Controller + Pore Air Volume

Matric Suction
Pore Air Pressure Back Pressure

GDSLAB Handbook v2 18/03/2003

7-3

Triaxial Calculations