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Effects of compaction moisture content on the shear strength of an unsaturated clay

Çokça, Erdal
Erol, O.
Armangil, F.
This paper deals with the results of an experimental study carried out on compacted clay (PL=23%) to investigate the influence of compaction water content on the shear strength of the clay. For the measurement of shear strength parameters, direct shear tests were done on samples compacted at optimum moisture content (i.e. w=24%), at the dry side of optimum (i.e. w=18%, 20% and 22%) and at the wet side of optimum (i.e. w=26% and 28%). Thermocouple psychrometers were used for suction measurements and the suction-moisture content relationship of the soil sample was obtained. The trends for suction, angle of friction and cohesion, which change below and above optimum moisture content, were analyzed. The compacted clay behaves like a granular soil on the dry side of optimum water content; and a reduction in angle of friction and an increase in cohesion are observed as the compaction water contents approach the optimum value. The angle of friction is not affected by soaking, but after soaking cohesion of the sample reduces.