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Proceedings of the 15th European Conference on Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering 581

A. Anagnostopoulos et al. (Eds.)


IOS Press, 2011
© 2011 The authors and IOS Press. All rights reserved.
doi:10.3233/978-1-60750-801-4-581

Triaxial test simulation on Erksak sand using


hardening soil model
Simulation des essais triaxiaux sur le sable Erksak avec le
modèle Hardening Soil
™š
{Ÿ 1
 š
{¡Ÿ
Faculty of Civil Engineering, University of Zagreb, CROATIA

ABSTRACT
Hardening Soil model (HS) available in numerical computer program Plaxis is widely used in geotechnical practice for modeling
both cohesive and non cohesive soils. The basic characteristics of the model are stress dependent stiffness according to a power
law, plastic straining due to primary deviatoric loading, plastic straining due to primary compression, elastic unloading/reloading
and failure according to the Mohr-Coulomb model. In this paper parameters of HS model are evaluated for Erksak sand. The tri-
axial tests database used consists of 15 drained and 31 undrained tests and it covers wide range of sand density and isotropic
consolidation pressure. Results of simulations show that relative density has to be accounted for to be able to simulate the sand
behavior for different states. Some relationships to relative density are proposed for reference secant stiffness, effective angle of
internal friction and angle of dilatancy. Great advantages of HS model, but also some limitations are presented in this paper, both
for drained and undrained conditions.

RÉSUMÉ
Le modèle Hardening Soil (HS), disponible dans le code de calcul Plaxis, est largement utilisé pour modeler le comportement
des sols cohérents et incohérents. Les caractéristiques essentielles du modèle sont la rigidité qui dépend des contraintes selon une
loi de puissance, les déformations plastiques dues au chargement déviatoir primaire, les déformations plastiques dues à la com-
pression primaire, le chargement/déchargement élastique et la loi de rupture selon Mohr-Coulomb. Dans cet article les para-
mètres du modèle HS ont été évalués pour le sable Erksak. On a utilisé les résultats des essais triaxiaux, 15 essais drainés et 31
essais non drainés, avec une grande variété de la pression de consolidation isotrope, sur les échantillons du sable ayant une
grande variété de la densité. Les résultats des simulations ont montré que pour le propre comportement calculé du sable aux états
différents, on doit prendre compte de l’indice de densité. On propose des relations entre l’indice de densité d’une part et la rigidi-
té sécante de référence, l’angle de frottement effectif et l’angle de dilatance d’autre. Les grands avantages et aussi quelques limi-
tations du modèle HS sont présentés pour les conditions drainées et non drainées.

Keywords: sand modeling, hardening soil model, triaxial test, critical state, dilatancy, Plaxis software

1 INTRODUCTION magnitude of deformation. One of the main be-


haviors that differs sand from other materials is
Modeling of complex sand behavior is great its characteristic to change the volume due to
challenge for advance numerical soil models. pure shearing, which is called dilatancy [1]. The
The extremely nonlinear behavior depends not dilatancy of sand is known to be positive for in-
only on the intrinsic properties of the sand but al- itially dense sand, causing extension of the sam-
so on the density of sand, state of stress and the ple, and negative for loose sand causing contrac-
1
Corresponding author
582 I. Sokolić and Ž. Skazlić / Triaxial Test Simulation on Erksak Sand Using Hardening Soil Model

tion. It can be observed from drained triaxial where Rf is failure ratio (ultimate deviatoric
tests on the dense and loose sand, starting from stress qf divided by asymptotic stress qa), while
the same isotropic consolidation pressure, that E50 (the confining stress dependent stiffness
for high rate of shear deformation both samples modulus for primary loading) and qf (the ulti-
dilate toward the same final density reaching the mate deviatoric stress) are given by:
critical state [2]. In the critical state the sand is
shearing under the constant rate of stresses re- m
 c cos   '3 sin  
taining the same volume. For different isotropic E50  E50ref   (2)
 c cos   p sin  
ref
pressures different critical state voids are
reached, that can be well approximated by the
critical state line [3-5]. For dense sand it is cha-
racteristic to reach the peak strength at relatively 2 sin 
small shear deformation and to reduce the q f  (c cot   ' 3 ) (3)
strength for further shearing, while the loose
1  sin 
sand reaches the critical state strength gradually.
The effect of peak strength caused by dilatancy is where E50ref is a reference stiffness modulus cor-
less pronounced at higher isotropic pressure [6]. responding to the confining pressure pref, power
For both dense and loose sand the stress-strain m is amount of stress dependency and c and 
relationship can be relatively good approximated are strength parameters (see Figure 1).
by hyperbola [7]. The shear hardening flow rule in HS model is
All the characteristic of real sand behavior linear and depends on mobilized dilatancy angle
mentioned above can be well observed on triaxi- Xm which takes value:
al tests on Erksak sand [5]. The database of tests - for  = 0 and sinm < 3/4 sin, Xm =0
consist of 15 drained and 31 undrained triaxial - for sinm ` 3/4 sin and X ) 0, Xm = X
tests in wide range of sand density and consoli- - for sinm ` 3/4 sin and X > 0
dation pressure which gives the great opportunity
to validate the capabilities of Hardening soil  sin  m  sin  cv 
model (HS) to model the real sand behavior. sinX m  max ,0  (4)
 1  sin  m sin  cv 

2 HARDENING SOIL MODEL where cv is critical state friction angle, X is soil
parameter and m is mobilized friction angle
HS model available in numerical computer pro- adopted from stress-dependent theory [10]:
gram Plaxis was originally developed for model-
ing real sand behavior [8]. The basic characteris- '1  ' 3
tics of the model are stress dependent stiffness sin  m  (5)
according to a power law, plastic straining due to '1  ' 3 2c cot 
primary deviatoric loading, plastic straining due
to primary compression, elastic unloading and
reloading, dilatancy and failure according to the
Mohr-Coulomb criteria [9]. The basic idea for
the formulation of the HS model is the hyperbol-
ic relationship between the vertical strain %1 and
the deviatoric stress q in drained triaxial loading:

1 q
 %1  (1)
2 E50 (2  R f ) 1  qR f / q f
Figure 1. Hyperbolic stress-strain relation for HS model [9].
I. Sokolić and Ž. Skazlić / Triaxial Test Simulation on Erksak Sand Using Hardening Soil Model 583

3 TRIAXIAL TESTS ON ERKSAK SAND The limiting void ratios are emin = 0.521 and emax
= 0.747, average grain size D50 = 0.33mm, con-
The database of triaxial test on Erksak sand con- tent of fines 0.7 % and critical state friction angle
sists of 15 drained and 31 undrained triaxial tests cv = 31.5 degrees.
in the wide range of effective isotropic consoli-
dation pressure (60kPa < p’0 < 8100kPa) and ini-
tial void ratio (0.588 < ei < 0.820). The change of 4 TRIAXIAL TEST SIMULATION
void ratio of samples and the effective isotropic
stress due to shearing in drained and undrained The results of triaxial tests on Erksak sand were
conditions are shown on Figure 2. It can be seen used to calibrate the parameters of HS soil model
that all the samples are changing the initial void and to evaluate the capabilities of HS model to
ratio ei towards the critical state line (CSL) ap- simulate the behavior of Erksak sand for differ-
proximated by log-log relationship [11]. In ent initial densities, in wide range of initial con-
drained conditions initially dense samples below solidation pressure and for different type of drai-
the CSL line (‘dry’ region [3]) are dilating, while nage conditions.
the loose samples above the CSL line (‘wet’ re- As hyperbolic stress-strain relationship of HS
gion) are compacting. In undrained conditions model is defined for drained shearing, the results
the volume of the initial sample remains constant of drained triaxial test were used to derive the
while the isotropic pressure is increasing for parameters of the model. For each drained triaxi-
samples in ‘dry’ region or reducing for samples al test the stress-strain results were used to define
in ‘wet’ region. the ultimate friction angle , ultimate shear stress
For all the tests in database the stress-strain qf, 50% of ultimate strength qf(50) and corres-
relation is available together with basic mechani- ponding axial deformation %1(50). The confining
cal and physical characteristics of Erksak sand. stress dependent stiffness modulus for primary
loading E50 was calculated using the equation:

q f (50 )
E50  (6)
% 1(50)

For all drained tests the stiffness modulus E50


and ultimate friction angle vary in the range
15.290kPa < E50 < 254.056kPa and 26.9o <  <
39.3o. To define the parameters of Erksak sand
for whole range of the results it was necessary to
account for confining pressure influence and for
sand density.
The reference stiffness was first calculated for
three samples with the same initial void ratio ei
= 0.68 at different initial isotropic pressure p’0 =
140; 60; 300 by using the equation (2). Changing
the power parameter m in the range of 0.5 <m <
1.0 it was found that best fit was achieved for m
= 1.0. Assuming that the power parameter does
not depend on the soil density the same value
was used to define the reference pressure for dif-
ferent isotropic pressure.
Figure 2. Critical state line for Erksak sand.
584 I. Sokolić and Ž. Skazlić / Triaxial Test Simulation on Erksak Sand Using Hardening Soil Model

For each drained test the initial relative com-


pactness was calculated using the equation:

emax  ei
ID  (7)
emax  emin

It can be seen from Figure 3a that the refer-


ence stiffness E50ref depends on initial relative
compactness of sample and can be approximated
by linear equation:

E50ref  51.4 I D  19.9 (8)

Looking at the ultimate friction angle  it can


be also found that it depends on the initial rela-
tive compactness while the linear correlation is
much better (Figure 3b):

  12.9 I D  31.0 (9)

The remaining strength parameter for Erksak


sand, the dilatancy X, can be calculated by equa-
tion (4) using the ultimate friction angle  and
the critical state friction angle cv. The correla-
tion with relative initial compactness is also li-
near (Figure 3c):

X  12.9 I D  0.5 (10)

Using the correlations (8), (9) and (10) all tri-


axial tests were simulated by computer program
Plaxis using the SoilTest procedure. The proce-
dure enables the quick simulation of strain con-
trol triaxial test using HS model. The results of
simulations for one dense sample and loose sam-
ple are shown on Figure 4. Different combination
of strength parameters  and X, were used to
present their influence on the results. It can be
seen from Figure 4a. that it is necessary to use
ultimate friction angle  as input parameter to
achieve the ultimate strength qf for given sample.
To achieve the dilatation of the dense sample,
positive value of dilatancy parameter X must be
used, and negative for compactness of loose
sample. For both dense and loose sample it can Figure 3. Effect of relative density compactness on a) stiff-
be seen that the hyperbolic relationship can well ness; b) strength and c) dilatancy of Erksak sand.
I. Sokolić and Ž. Skazlić / Triaxial Test Simulation on Erksak Sand Using Hardening Soil Model 585

Figure 4. Drained triaxial test for a) dense; b) loose sample.

Figure 5. Undrained triaxial tests a) dense; b) loose sample.


586 I. Sokolić and Ž. Skazlić / Triaxial Test Simulation on Erksak Sand Using Hardening Soil Model

approximate stress-strain curve. Compared to the


real sand behavior the HS model of soil is not
able to simulate the strength reduction for dense
samples after reaching the ultimate strength.
The same strategy was used to simulate the
undrained triaxial tests on Erksak sand. The re-
sults of simulation for one dense and one loose
sample are shown on Figure 5. It can be seen that
the results of simulation show large deviation
from measurements both in effective stress pass
and in stress-strain relationship. The deviation is
much pronounced for loose samples for which
the effect of dilatation is less pronounced then in
measurements, leading to much bigger maximum
undrained strength. The reason can be found in
the way the mobilized dilatancy Xm is defined,
because it is active just for sinm ` 3/4 sin.
Another problem caused by mobilized dilatancy Figure 6. Drained triaxial test simulation on Erksak sand.
is that its value remains constant after reaching
the ultimate mobilized friction angle leading to
infinite undrained strength of dense samples and REFERENCES
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