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Procedure to Estimate the Seismic Settlement of Partially Saturated Soils


The performance of near-surface geosystems during earthquake shaking depends on the free-field response of the soil layer and soil–structure interaction mechanisms. This paper presents a brief summary of the variables involved in considering the free-field response of partially saturated soil layers, and provides a step-by-step procedure to estimate the seismic settlement of a soil layer with a given initial relative density and degree of saturation. The procedure, which has been validated in a previous study using centrifuge physical model tests, was tabularized and presented in a flow chart. This methodology was followed to estimate the seismic settlement of different sand layers having different initial relative densities. It was observed that the degree of saturation has the greatest impact on loose soil layers, which also show the greatest amount of seismic settlement. However, partially saturated soil layers resulted in lower seismic settlement compared with dry or saturated soil layers.

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Correspondence to Majid Ghayoomi.

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Ghayoomi, M., McCartney, J.S. Procedure to Estimate the Seismic Settlement of Partially Saturated Soils. Indian Geotech J 46, 272–275 (2016).

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  • Seismic settlement
  • Seismic compression
  • Partially saturated soils
  • Empirical methodology