Construction in urban areas and the development of improved transportation links increasingly involves building works on soft clay deposits, which occur widely throughout Europe and elsewhere in the world. To improve the current design methods, which can be either over-conservative or unsafe, improved understanding of soft clay behaviour and constitutive modelling is required, together with implementation in numerical codes that are suitable for widespread use by practising geotechnical engineers.
The research activities concentrate on the development and validation of a constitutive model for clays within the framework of Multilaminate Models and thus incorporates effects of anisotropy and principal stress rotation. The model will be implemented into finite element codes and is therefore readily available for solving practical problems such as embankments, foundations, tunnels, excavations and ground improvement techniques.
The project is supported by the European Commission research Training Network.