An Approach to Estimate the Atterberg Limits of Pilani Soil Using Ultrasonics

The present study aims to establish calibration curves to estimate the liquid and plastic limit for Pilani soil by understanding ultrasonic pulse velocity via it. The Atterberg limits are the basic measure of a fine-grained soil ‘s essential water content. They are the limit of its shrinkage, the limit of plastic and the limit of liquid. Four physical states of soil quality are used depending on water content. Atterberg limits are the water content at which the soil undergoes physical change of state. Liquid and plastic limits are two commonly used Atterberg limits and are widely used to associate with engineering behaviour such as compressibility, compactibility, shrink-swell and shear strength, either individually or together, with other soil properties. For accurate calculation, the traditional method of liquid limit determination allows testing to be carried out on 5 (at least) different water contents. Also calculating the liquid limit using a cone penetrometer requires more than one test. In plastic limit estimation, related trials are involved. Sand material, as well as ultrasonic pulse velocity through it, affects its liquid and plastic limits. Consequently, through recognising ultrasonic pulse velocity via it, it should be possible to estimate liquid and plastic limits. Ultrasonic pulse velocity using a transmission technique (at constant water content and density); and their liquid and plastic limits were calculated and plotted for Pilani soil using traditional techniques at varying sand content. This graph can be used as a calibration curve for the above estimation purposes and can also be developed for other soils in the area. It is also possible to establish similar calibration curves for other reigon soils, and hence the calibration curves produced in the current study involving the determination of ultrasonic pulse velocity through soil are of great importance.

Author(s) Details

Prof. K. Kumar
Department of Civil Engineering, Birla Institute of Technology & Science, Pilani, – 333031, Rajasthan, India.

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