Stress-strain responses of block samples of compressible chicago glacial clays

Wanjei Cho, Richard J Finno*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

55 Scopus citations


This paper presents the results and analysis of a laboratory investigation of the behavior of lightly overconsolidated compressible Chicago glacial clays over a wide strain range. Each specimen was trimmed from high quality block samples taken from an excavation in Evanston, Illinois. Specimens were instrumented with three sets of bender elements and local LVDTs. After K0 consolidation to the in situ vertical effective stress of the block, drained stress probe tests were conducted. Results of bender elements tests obtained prior to stress probing show that compressible Chicago glacial clay initially is cross anisotropic. Propagation velocities measured by bender elements in axial direction after K0 reconsolidation and drained creep agrees well with the in situ shear wave velocity measured by seismic cone penetration tests. Results of drained stress probe tests are analyzed in terms of shear, volumetric and coupled stiffness, stiffness degradation, and direction of loading. The significant variability of shear, bulk and cross-coupling response depending on stress path direction and strain level provide experimental evidence that the Chicago clays are incrementally nonlinear at the strain levels investigated.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number012001QGT
Pages (from-to)178-188
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Geotechnical and Geoenvironmental Engineering
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 10 2010


  • Anisotropy
  • Bender element
  • Chicago clay
  • Clays
  • Cross anisotropy
  • Experimentation
  • Experiments
  • Limit state
  • Sampling
  • Stiffness
  • Stress strain relations

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Science(all)
  • Geotechnical Engineering and Engineering Geology


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