The paper presents the results of an experimental study on the effects of suction and temperature on the volumetric behaviour of an unsaturated soil. Statically compacted Boom clay samples have been used in the testing programme, which has been performed using an oedometer apparatus with simultaneous control of suction and temperature. Suctions up to 0·45 MPa and temperatures up to 80°C have been applied. Special measures have been taken to control and minimise the problems associated with phase changes and vapour migration at high temperatures. A comprehensive experimental programme has been carried out, including isothermal tests with control of vertical stress, suction and temperature, non-isothermal tests under constant suction, and isothermal swelling pressure tests. Testing samples at two compacted soil densities provides observations concerning a wide scope of behaviour ranging from collapse to swelling behaviour on wetting. Test results obtained at 80°C have been compared with those of tests performed at room temperature (22°C). Based on these comparisons, thermal effects on a variety of features of behaviour such as swelling potential, swelling pressure, collapsibility, shrinkage strains, compressibility, stress path dependence and degree of strain reversibility are presented and discussed. Although the basic behaviour is similar at high and low temperatures, various significant differences are identified concerning mainly swelling strains developed during wetting and compressibility with respect to loading. Swelling pressure test results indicate that the high-temperature samples yield at a lower stress than that observed in room-temperature samples, suggesting that the stress domain bounded by the main yield surface reduces as temperature increases—a behaviour feature shared with saturated soils.

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Published on 01/01/2003

DOI: 10.1680/geot.2003.53.1.65
Licence: CC BY-NC-SA license

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