Comparison of Soil Strength Parameters in a Small and Large Scale Direct Shear Test

  • S. Farid F. MojtahediEmail author
  • Saeed Rezvani
  • Ali Nazari
Conference paper
Part of the Advances in Science, Technology & Innovation book series (ASTI)


According to the recommended criteria in the instruction, the maximum grain diameter of the samples should not exceed a certain size to meet the standard requirements for the direct shear test. It can be said that there is a tendency to use a small-scale shear test instead of a large-scale one, and the reason is that problems such as expensive equipment among others arise when using a large-scale direct shear test. Since small-scale direct shear test is recommended only for fine-grained soils, coarse soil should be tested on a large-scale, or they should be adjusted to be tested in a small direct shear by modifying grain distribution. In this study, two different methods were investigated for grading modification and using a small-scale shear test. The advantage of these methods is that they assess the change in the internal friction angle. To this end, six soil samples containing coarse particles were collected from Ardabil city. All the samples were tested for the determination of soil resistance parameters in a large direct shear test. Samples were tested on a small-scale direct shear test after applying the modified method mentioned above. Finally, soil strength parameters were compared with two different scales. The results clearly indicate that the strength parameters obtained from the replacement method lead to a closer approximation to the resistance parameters obtained by the large-scale direct shear test.


Direct shear test Scale effect Replacement method Elimination method 


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • S. Farid F. Mojtahedi
    • 1
    Email author
  • Saeed Rezvani
    • 1
  • Ali Nazari
    • 1
  1. 1.Sharif University of TechnologyTehranIran

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