Acta Geotechnica

, Volume 9, Issue 4, pp 695–709 | Cite as

Flow rule in a high-cycle accumulation model backed by cyclic test data of 22 sands

  • Torsten WichtmannEmail author
  • Andrzej Niemunis
  • Theodoros Triantafyllidis
Research Paper


The flow rule used in the high-cycle accumulation (HCA) model proposed by Niemunis et al. (Comput Geotech 32: 245, 2005) is examined on the basis of the data from approximately 350 drained long-term cyclic triaxial tests (N = 105 cycles) performed on 22 different grain-size distribution curves of a clean quartz sand. In accordance with (Wichtmann et al. in Acta Geotechnica 1: 59, 2006), for all tested materials, the “high-cyclic flow rule (HCFR)”, i.e., the ratio of the volumetric and deviatoric strain accumulation rates \(\dot{\varepsilon}_{\rm{v}}^{{\rm acc}}/\dot{\varepsilon}_{\rm{q}}^{{\rm acc}}\), was found dependent primarily on the average stress ratio η av = q av/p av and independent of amplitude, soil density and average mean pressure. The experimental HCFR can be fairly well approximated by the flow rule of the modified Cam-clay (MCC) model. Instead of the critical friction angle \(\varphi_{\rm{c}}\) which enters the flow rule for monotonic loading, the HCA model uses the MCC flow rule expression with a slightly different parameter \(\varphi_{\rm{cc}}\). It should be determined from cyclic tests. \(\varphi_{\rm{cc}}\) and \(\varphi_{\rm{c}}\) are of similar magnitude but not always identical, because they are calibrated from different types of tests. For a simplified calibration in the absence of cyclic test data, \(\varphi_{\rm{cc}}\) may be estimated from the angle of repose \(\varphi_{\rm{r}}\) determined from a pluviated cone of sand (Wichtmann et al. in Acta Geotechnica 1: 59, 2006). However, the paper demonstrates that the MCC flow rule with \(\varphi_{\rm{r}}\) does not fit well the experimentally observed HCFR in the case of coarse or well-graded sands. For an improved simplified calibration procedure, correlations between \(\varphi_{\rm{cc}}\) and parameters of the grain-size distribution curve (d 50,   C u) have been developed on the basis of the present data set. The approximation of the experimental HCFR by the generalized flow rule equations proposed in (Wichtmann et al. in J Geotech Geoenviron Eng ASCE 136: 728, 2010), considering anisotropy, is also discussed in the paper.


Drained long-term cyclic triaxial tests Flow rule High-cycle accumulation (HCA) model Sand 



The experiments analyzed in the paper have been performed in the framework of the project A8 “Influence of the fabric changes in soil on the lifetime of structures” of SFB 398 “Lifetime oriented design concepts” during the former work of the authors at Ruhr-University Bochum (RUB), Germany. The authors are grateful to DFG (German Research Council) for the financial support. The cyclic triaxial tests have been performed by M. Skubisch in the RUB soil mechanics laboratory.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Torsten Wichtmann
    • 1
    Email author
  • Andrzej Niemunis
    • 1
  • Theodoros Triantafyllidis
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute of Soil Mechanics and Rock Mechanics (IBF)Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT)KarlsruheGermany

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