Issues of uncertainty regarding localized strains in granular soils

M. A. Mooney*, R. J. Finno, G. Viggiani, W. W. Harris

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Shear bands or slip zones occur frequently in field situations and in laboratory experiments involving soils. Once a shear band has formed, the stability of the overlying structure is governed by the strength and deformation properties of the material within the localized zone. This paper discusses the use and mis-use of continuum-based deformation analysis techniques to characterize shear band deformation. Results are presented illustrating that previously used continuum-based techniques are significantly affected by the erratic nature of particulate behavior. A deformation analysis technique utilizing a least squares linear regression approach is incorporated to minimize the effects of particulate behavior when determining shear band strains. Results are also presented indicating that the use of a small strain formulation can result in erroneously excessive dilation within a shear band.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)312-325
Number of pages14
JournalGeotechnical Special Publication
Issue number58 I
StatePublished - 1996

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Architecture
  • Building and Construction
  • Geotechnical Engineering and Engineering Geology


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