Acta Geotechnica

, Volume 6, Issue 1, pp 31–40 | Cite as

Numerical investigation of undrained cavity expansion in fine-grained soils

Research Paper


Based on the spherical cavity expansion (SCE) problem, Cudmani and Osinov (Can Geotech J 38:622–638, 2001), Osinov and Cudmani (Int J Numer Anal Method Geomech 25:473–495, 2001) developed a semi-empirical method of interpretation of CPT for coarse-grained soils (sand, gravel) using a hypoplastic constitutive model. Using a material-independent shape factor, the cone penetration resistance was related to the limit pressure required to expand a spherical cavity. The shape factor was observed to be a function of the soil state only, in particular the pressure-dependent relative density. This paper presents an analogous interpretation technique for CPT in fine-grained soils using the shape factor concept, Cavity Expansion approach, and a hypoplastic constitutive model. Relations for the shape factor and the limit pressure have been proposed based on the parameters affecting these quantities. A validation of the proposed interpretation technique with experimental results has also been performed.


CPT Cavity expansion Shape factor Limit pressure Hypoplasticity 



The present study is a part of the M.Tech thesis “Interpretation of CPT in fine-grained soils”. It was carried out at TU Dresden and financially supported by DAAD. The first author is grateful to his Indian supervisor, Dr G.V. Ramana, for his guidance and cooperation during the course of this project.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Indian Institute of Technology DelhiNew DelhiIndia
  2. 2.Baugrund DresdenDresdenGermany
  3. 3.Institute of Geotechnical Engineering, TU-DresdenDresdenGermany

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