Volume 39, N. 1, Special Issue: Unsaturated Soils (Invited Editors: G.F.N. Gitirana Jr. & D.G. Fredlund), January-April 2016 | PDF(8 downloads)
The purpose of this paper is to investigate the horizontal stress evolution and soil collapse during the cement dissolution process using a combination of experimental and numerical methods. The experimental procedure was carried out using a modified oedometer cell with horizontal stress measurements and synthetic samples in order to simulate simultaneous cement dissolution, stress changes and sample deformation. The samples were loaded at a constant vertical stress and exposed to a reactive fluid which dissolved the cementation of the artificial soil. During the dissolution process, sample volume decreased and horizontal stress changes were observed. Initially the horizontal stress decreased due to grain mass loss and then increased due to solid matrix rearrangement. Numerical simulation of these coupled chemical and mechanical processes was performed using a general purpose finite element code capable of performing numerical analysis of engineering problems. The constitutive model adopted to reproduce the soil behavior is an extension of the Barcelona Basic Model for unsaturated soils including the cement mineral concentration as state variable. Some new features were incorporated to the original elasto-plastic model in order to represent the results observed in the experiments. In this paper a good agreement between experimental and numerical results was achieved.