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Integrated Digital Image Analyses for Understanding the Particle Shape Effects on Sand–Geomembrane Interface Shear

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Abstract

This paper investigates the influence of particle shape on the multi-scale shear behavior of sand–geomembrane interfaces through advanced imaging techniques. Two sand specimens with similar particle size distribution but varying particle shapes were scanned using X-ray micro-computed tomography (µCT). The data were processed and analyzed using MATLAB to extract relevant shape parameters like sphericity, roundness, and fractal dimension. Interface shear tests were conducted using a modified direct shear apparatus, which allows image analysis of sand–geomembrane interactions by capturing the kinematics of particles at the contact plane. Additionally, micro-topographical analysis was carried out using a digital profilometer to measure the surface changes of the geomembranes after shearing. By combining the findings from the µCT of sands and micro-topographical analyses of sheared geomembranes, this study aims to gain insights into the macroscopic shear behavior and relate it to the underlying micro-mechanisms. The findings indicated that the increased shear strength observed in irregular particles has a direct correlation with the deeper indentations caused by these particles and the larger localized shear zones associated with these particles.

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Data Availability

The data generated/analyzed during the study are available from the corresponding author on reasonable request.

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Acknowledgements

The computing resources utilized in this study were acquired through the DRIP grant provided by the Department of Civil Engineering at the Indian Institute of Science. Authors are grateful to the Ministry of Water Resources, India for this financial support.

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Methodology, formal investigation and analysis, conceptualization, parameters formulation and results—review, writing—original draft preparation: RK; ideation, design of experiments, writing—review and editing, supervision: GML.

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Correspondence to Gali Madhavi Latha.

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Khan, R., Latha, G.M. Integrated Digital Image Analyses for Understanding the Particle Shape Effects on Sand–Geomembrane Interface Shear. Int. J. of Geosynth. and Ground Eng. 9, 81 (2023). https://doi.org/10.1007/s40891-023-00499-y

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