Skip to main content

Research Repository

Advanced Search

The influence of inter-particle friction and the intermediate stress ratio on soil response under generalised stress conditions

Barreto, Daniel; O'Sullivan, Catherine


Catherine O'Sullivan


Previous research studies have used either physical experiments or discrete element method (DEM) simulations to explore, independently, the influence of the coefficient of inter-particle friction (μ) and the intermediate stress ratio (b) on the behaviour of granular materials. DEM simulations and experiments using photoelasticity have shown that when an anisotropic stress condition is applied to a granular material, strong force chains or columns of contacting particles transmitting relatively large forces, form parallel to the major principal stress orientation. The combined effects of friction and the intermediate stress ratio upon the resistance of these strong force chains to collapse (buckling failure) are considered here using data from an extensive set of DEM simulations including triaxial and true triaxial compression tests. For all tests both μ and b affected the macro- and micro-scale response, however the mechanisms whereby the force chain stability was improved differ. While friction clearly enhances the inherent stability of the strong force chains, the intermediate stress ratio affects the contact density and distribution of orthogonal contacts that provide lateral support to the force chains.

Journal Article Type Article
Online Publication Date May 16, 2012
Publication Date 2012-07
Deposit Date Sep 27, 2012
Publicly Available Date Sep 27, 2012
Print ISSN 1434-5021
Electronic ISSN 1434-7636
Publisher BMC
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 14
Issue 4
Pages 505-521
Keywords DEM, true triaxial tests, fabric, intermediate stress ratio, inter-particle friction
Public URL
Publisher URL
Contract Date Sep 27, 2012


You might also like

Downloadable Citations