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A New Isotropic Specimen Preparation Method from Slurry for both Saturated and Unsaturated Triaxial Testing of a Low-Plasticity Silt

Ahmadi-Naghadeh, Reza
Toker, Nabi Kartal
A new procedure for the preparation of low-plasticity silt specimens that are isotropically reconstituted from slurry is developed for use in both saturated and unsaturated soil testing. Spatial variations of the water content and grain size distribution were examined to confirm the uniformity of the specimens (regarding void radio and segregation). The new preparation method results in a homogeneous specimen, which has a simple stress history. The repeatability of the proposed method in preparing identical specimens was verified for both saturated and unsaturated soil testing. The strength and volumetric behavior of specimens prepared by the introduced method are compared with those of moist-tamped compacted specimens and one-dimensionally reconstituted slurry specimens by performing consolidated drained triaxial tests. The microstructure of the specimens prepared with different methods was examined using Scanning Electron Microscopy and Mercury Intrusion Porosimetry. The test results indicate that silt specimens could exhibit either dilative or contractive behavior at normal consolidated conditions, depending on the microstructure.