Towards a Unified Soil Mechanics Theory: The Use of Effective Stresses in Unsaturated Soils

Indexed in: EBSCO, Book Citation Index, Science Edition.

With the application of the effective stress concept, the strength and volumetric behavior of saturated materials was clearly understood. For the case of unsaturated materials, a universally accepted ...
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Tensional Strength

Pp. 110-114 (5)

DOI: 10.2174/9781608057399113010011

Author(s): Eduardo Rojas


In this chapter, the probabilistic porous-solid model is used to simulate the tensional strength of unsaturated soils tested at different water contents. The strength of unsaturated soils can be split in two parts: one related to the net stress and the other to suction. The strength generated by suction has its origin on the additional contact stresses induced to solid particles by water meniscus. This additional contact stress is called matric suction stress. In that sense, the tensional strength of soils represents the matric suction stress of the material at that particular water content. The numerical and experimental comparisons of the tensional strength of unsaturated soils tested at different water contents show that the probabilistic porous-solid model can simulate this phenomenon with sufficient accuracy.


Direct tension test, water meniscus, tension stress, suction, matric suction stress, additional contact stress, tensional strength, probabilistic poroussolid model, effective stress, net stress, suction, cohesion, water menisci, homogenous material, retention curves.