MS thesis_Shahedur Rahman.pdf (3.47 MB)

Improvement of Stiffness and Strength of Backfill Soils Through Optimization of Compaction Procedures and Specifications

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posted on 2019-12-04, 13:45 authored by Shahedur RahmanShahedur Rahman
Vibration compaction is the most effective way of compacting coarse-grained materials. The effects of vibration frequency and amplitude on the compaction density of different backfill materials (No. 4 natural sand, No. 24 stone sand and No. 5, No. 8, No. 43 aggregates), were studied in this research. The test materials were characterized based on the particle sizes and morphology parameters using digital image analysis technique. Small-scale laboratory compaction tests were carried out with variable frequency and amplitude of vibrations using vibratory hammer and vibratory table. The results show an increase in density with the increase in amplitude and frequency of vibration. However, the increase in density with the increase in amplitude of vibration is more pronounced for the coarse aggregates than for the sands. A comparison of the maximum dry densities of different test materials shows that the dry densities obtained after compaction using the vibratory hammer are greater than those obtained after compaction using the vibratory table at the highest amplitude and frequency of vibration available in both equipment. Large-scale vibratory roller compaction tests were performed in the field for No. 30 backfill soil to observe the effect of vibration frequency and number of passes on the compaction density. Accelerometer sensors were attached to the roller drum (Caterpillar, model CS56B) to measure the frequency of vibration for the two different vibration settings available to the roller. For this roller and soil tested, the results show that the higher vibration setting is more effective. Direct shear tests and direct interface shear tests were performed to study the impact of particle characteristics of the coarse-grained backfill materials on interface shear resistance. A unique relationship was found between the normalized surface roughness and the ratio of critical-state interface friction angle between sand-gravel mixture with steel to the internal critical-state friction angle of the sand-gravel mixture.


Joint Transportation Research Program


Degree Type

  • Master of Science in Civil Engineering


  • Civil Engineering

Campus location

  • West Lafayette

Advisor/Supervisor/Committee Chair

Dr. Monica Prezzi

Advisor/Supervisor/Committee co-chair

Dr. Rodrigo Salgado

Additional Committee Member 2

Dr. Peter Becker

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