Geotechnical and Geological Engineering

, Volume 35, Issue 6, pp 2923–2934 | Cite as

Effect of Mineralogical Properties of Expansive Soil on Its Mechanical Behavior

Original paper


Expansive soil contains montmorillonite clay mineral; which has tendency to swell by imbibing water in monsoon season and shrink or become harder by leaving cracks in drier seasons. Excessive drying and wetting of soil progressively deteriorates structures over the years and cause severe damage. Some research has been performed on identification of expansive soil and determination of its expansiveness and shrinkage–swelling potential based on its index properties at various wetting–drying conditions. Few researchers worked on the chemical stabilization of expansive soil to improve its mechanical behavior. However, the relationship of mineralogical properties of expansive soil with its shear strength and compressibility parameters is still unexplored; and these parameters are required in bearing capacity and settlement calculations for soil strata. The current research is focused on relationship of mineralogical properties (CEC, SSA, montmorillonite content) of expansive soil with its mechanical behavior including compressibility, shear strength, swelling potential and index parameters. This experimental research has been performed on expansive soil (black cotton soil) covering major part of Bhavnagar, located along the coast line of Gulf of Khambhat in Gujarat (India), which has serious construction issues due to its severe shrinkage–swelling behavior.


Swelling potential Expansive soil Montmorillonite CEC 

List of symbols




Friction angle


Swell pressure










Shear strength


Montmorillonite clay mineral


Kaolinite clay mineral


Quartz mineral


Differential free swell index


Cation exchange capacity


Specific surface area


Liquid limit


Plasticity index


Compression index


Recompression index


Compliance with Ethical Standards


Funding was provided by Indian Institute of Technology Gandhinagar.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Indian Institute of Technology GandhinagarAhmedabadIndia
  2. 2.Civil EngineeringIndian Institute of Technology GandhinagarAhmedabadIndia

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