A new framework for quantifying the structure of undisturbed and artificially cemented alluvium

Paul Sargent, Mohamed Rouainia

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Silty alluvial soils are highly compressible. Deep soil mixing is being increasingly used for remediating such ground conditions, which produces artificially cemented soil columns that gain strength with curing. This study investigated the one-dimensional compression and shear stiffness degradation behaviour of an alluvium in its reconstituted, undisturbed and artificially cemented states. The binder used to stabilise the soil was a low-carbon alkali-activated blast-furnace slag. Oedometer and triaxialdata indicated that the nature of the soil structure evolved from being chiefly meta-stable when undisturbed to dominantly stable in its cemented state after 28 days of curing. A new framework has been presented to quantify continuous changes in structure within the alluvium during onedimensionalcompression in its undisturbed and cemented states, with respect to its intrinsic properties. This better captured structure degradation during earlier stages of compression compared with previous frameworks and provided insights into defining the limits of meta-stable and stablecomponents of structure within materials of higher strength. A new formulation has been developed for predicting shear stiffness degradation of samples with strain under triaxial conditions. This showedefficiency and good performance in modelling experimental data and was successfully used to quantify initial structure and degradation of structure within the undisturbed and cemented alluvium.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-22
Number of pages22
Early online date1 Sept 2021
Publication statusPublished online - 1 Sept 2021


  • compressibility
  • ground improvement
  • microscopy
  • soil stabilisation
  • stiffness


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