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Geotechnical Site Characterization by Anirban De

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CHAPTER 5

GEOTECHNICAL LABORATORY TESTING METHODS

5.1Introduction

Geotechnical laboratory tests are important to assess engineering properties of soils under controlled conditions. Some of these are index tests, which help identify and classify the soil. Others are performance tests, which help engineers estimate engineering properties of soils, for use in analysis and design.

Examples of index tests are:

  • Water content
  • Grain-size distribution
  • Classification
  • Unit weight
  • Specific gravity

Examples of performance tests are:

  • Consolidation
  • Shear strength
  • Hydraulic conductivity

Some tests (e.g., most index tests) may be performed on a bulk sample of soil, which might be disturbed. Exceptions are water content, where it is important to seal the ...

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