Bearing capacity increase of geotechnical structures through shear band enhancement
The proposed research project will investigate the ultimate limit state of geotechnical structures concerning the increase in limit load. Shear bands that will develop in the soil are of main interest. A new approach to limit load increase of geotechnical structures will be examined: The enhancement of shear bands. Based on the concept of one critical failure mechanism and the corresponding limit load, the limit load can be increased, if the critical failure mechanism is prohibited through targeted soil reinforcement. Numerical simulations will reveal the shear bands and limit loads of several geotechnical structures. A method to automatically simulate the shear band enhancement will be developed, based on already developed methods for numerical optimization of geotechnical structures within the serviceability state. The increase of limit load can therefore be determined as well as the loads acting on the reinforcing material. Following 1g-model tests with shear band enhancement will be conducted. Preliminary tests determine suitable methods and materials for the reinforcement of shear bands in the model scale. The insights of the 1g model tests will be extended to ng-model tests in a geotechnical centrifuge. Therefore the applicability of shear band enhancement for the increase of limit load will be verified. Transient loads and the practical implementation will be examined during a second project phase.