University of Dundee Variable Direction Dynamic Cyclic Simple Shear Case Study

Mr. Efthymios Apostolou and Dr. Andrew J. Brennan from the Civil Engineering department of the University of Dundee, planned to carry to out some advanced physical modelling techniques in the Universities centrifuge. However, before using large amounts of soil in a centrifuge model and testing it under earthquake motions, it is necessary to test the material under shearing to check its behaviour, in particular liquefaction.

The chosen material used for further investigation as a scaled reference was coarse silt A50 Silica. The equipment used for the tests was the GDS Variable Direction Dynamic Cyclic Simple Shear System (VDDCSS). Simple Shear was preferred over a conventional direct shear device, as soil behaviour under simple shearing mimics better the soil stress response under seismic events in real field conditions. More precisely, a conventional shear box splits horizontally in halves during the direct shear test and as a result, it allows a specific plane of failure for the specimen. Read the full case study here.