Effect of principal consolidation stress difference on undrained shear strength

Raj P. Khera, Raymond J. Krizek

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


The purpose of this study was to investigate the effect of consolidation under a principal stress difference on the strength response of a cohesive soil possessing two different types of initial structure. A laboratory sample of an illite clay was consolidated one-dimensionally from a slurry, and cylindrical specimens were cut with their axes parallel and perpendicular to the direction of the one-dimensional consolidation stress. Constant deformation rate undrained triaxial compression tests were conducted to determine the stress-strain-strength characteristics. Experimental results indicated that (1) the relative magnitudes of the axial and radial strains during consolidation depend on the initial soil structure, as well as the respective consolidation stresses; (2) the moisture content after consolidation decreased with an increase in the principal consolidation stress ratio for a constant value of the mean consolidation stress; and (3) the stress-strain-strength response was dependent on both the principal consolidation stress ratio and the initial structure. Greater strength's decreased pore pressures, and increased values of the pore pressure coefficient A at failure occurred for larger values of the principal consolidation stress ratio. In addition to its dependence on the initial soil structure, the ratio of the undrained shear strength to the major principal consolidation stress was greatest for isotropic consolidation conditions and decreased considerably for anisotropic consolidation; however, for both the maximum principal stress difference and the maximum principal effective stress ratio failure criteria, values computed by using both Af for the isotropic case and Af for the anisotropic case generally agree within about 10 per cent with the comparable experimental values.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-17
Number of pages17
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1968

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Geotechnical Engineering and Engineering Geology


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