Date of Award

5-1-2018

Degree Name

Master of Science

Department

Civil Engineering

First Advisor

Kolay, Prabir

Abstract

Liquefaction of soil is one of the major contributing factors for damages of infrastructures and utility services during earthquake. Liquefaction occurs when short strong shaking creates undrained loading condition in saturated soil deposit thereby increases pore water pressure, which eventually equals the effective confining pressure resulting in significant reduction in shear strength and bearing capacity of soil deposit. Several studies have been conducted to investigate the effect of polypropylene fiber on sand deposit as a measure to prevent liquefaction but most of them are based on static tests. Therefore, the present study, tries to understand liquefaction characteristics of sand reinforced with polypropylene fiber based on cyclic triaxial test. The main objectives of this study are (i) to explore the effect of polypropylene fiber on pore pressure generation and deformation characteristics of sand, and (ii) to observe the effect of confining pressure on liquefaction characteristics of sand-fiber mixture. A series of stress controlled cyclic triaxial tests were performed at 5 and 10 psi effective confining pressures. At 5 psi effective confining pressure, specimens of clean sand, and sand containing 0.05, 0.075, 0.1, and 0.3% polypropylene fiber by dry weight were tested at 0.2, 0.25, 0.3, and 0.4 Cyclic Stress Ratio (CSR). However, at 10 psi effective confining pressure, specimens were also tested for 0.5%, and 0.75% fiber in addition to those at 5 psi confining pressure at 0.2, 0.3, and 0.4 CSR. Based on the test results, it was observed that, cyclic shear stress increases with the increase in initial effective confining pressure. Also, for a given CSR, liquefaction resistance decreased with the increase in effective confining pressure. Furthermore, significant improvement in liquefaction resistance was observed when the fiber content exceeded beyond 0.075% at 5 psi confining stress. However, at 10 psi confining pressure, addition of fiber did not help in improvement of liquefaction resistance of sand except when cyclic shear stress was applied at 0.2 CSR. At 0.2 CSR, although the specimens did liquefy based on pore pressure generation criteria at all fiber contents, specimens containing 0.5% and 0.75% fiber did not ever reach 2.5% and 5% DA (Double Amplitude) deformation throughout 1000 loading cycles.

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