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Smith's Elements of Soil Mechanics

Smith, Ian


10. Auflage September 2021
704 Seiten, Softcover

ISBN: 978-1-119-75039-0
John Wiley & Sons

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Smith's Elements of Soil Mechanics

The revised 10th edition of the core textbook on soil mechanics

The revised and updated edition of Smith's Elements of Soil Mechanics continues to offer a core undergraduate textbook on soil mechanics. The author, a noted expert in geotechnical engineering, reviews all aspects of soil mechanics and provides a detailed explanation of how to use both the current and the next versions of Eurocode 7 for geotechnical design. Comprehensive in scope, the book includes accessible explanations, helpful illustrations, and worked examples and covers a wide range of topics including slope stability, retaining walls and shallow and deep foundations.

The text is updated throughout to include additional material and more worked examples that clearly illustrate the processes for performing testing and design to the new European standards. In addition, the book's accessible format provides the information needed to understand how to use the first and second generations of Eurocode 7 for geotechnical design. The second generation of this key design code has seen a major revision and the author explains the new methodology well, and has provided many worked examples to illustrate the design procedures. The new edition also contains a new chapter on constitutive modeling in geomechanics and updated information on the strength of soils, highway design and laboratory and field testing. This important text:
* Includes updated content throughout with a new chapter on constitutive modeling
* Provides explanation on geotechnical design to the new version of Eurocode 7
* Presents enhanced information on laboratory and field testing and the new approach to pavement foundation design
* Provides learning outcomes, real-life examples, and self-learning exercises within each chapter
* Offers a companion website with downloadable video tutorials, animations, spreadsheets and additional teaching materials

Written for students of civil engineering and geotechnical engineering, Smith's Elements of Soil Mechanics, 10th Edition covers the fundamental changes in the ethos of geotechnical design advocated in the Eurocode 7.

Part I Fundamentals of soil mechanics

1 Classification and Physical Properties of Soils

Learning outcomes

Agricultural and engineering soil

Origin of soil

Clay soils

Field identification of soils

Laboratory classification of soils

Activity of a clay

Soil classification and description

Soil properties


2 Permeability and Flow of Water in Soils

Learning outcomes

Subsurface water

Flow of water through soils

Darcy's law of saturated flow

Coefficient of permeability, k

Determination of permeability in the laboratory

Determination of permeability in the field

Approximation of coefficient of permeability

General differential equation of flow

Potential and stream functions

Flow nets

Critical flow conditions

Design of soil filters

Capillarity and unsaturated soils

Earth dams

Seepage through non-uniform soil deposits


3 Total and Effective Stress

Learning outcomes

State of stress in a soil mass

Total stress

Pore Pressure

Effective stress

Stresses induced by applied loads


4 Shear Strength of Soils

Learning outcomes

Elastic stresses and strains


Complex stress

The Mohr circle diagram


Coulomb's law of soil shear strength

Modified Coulomb's law

The Mohr-Coulomb yield theory

Determination of the shear strength parameters

Determination of the shear strength parameters from triaxial testing

The pore pressure coefficients A and B

The triaxial extension test

Behaviour of soils under shear

Operative strengths of soils

The critical state

Sensitivity of clays

Residual strength of soil


Part II Geotechnical codes and standards and site investigation

5 stress paths and critical state

Stress paths in two-dimensional space

Stress paths in three-dimensional space

Isotropic consolidation

Stress paths in the triaxial apparatus


6 Eurocode 7

Introduction to the Structural Eurocodes

Introduction to Eurocode 7

Using Eurocode 7: basis of geotechnical design

Geotechnical design by calculation

Ultimate limit states

The EQU limit state

The GEO limit state and Design Approaches

Serviceability limit states

Geotechnical design report

7 Site Investigation

EN 1997-2:2007 - Ground investigation and testing

Planning of ground investigations

Site exploration methods

Soil and rock sampling

Groundwater measurements

Field tests in soil and rock

Geotechnical reports

Part III Advanced soil mechanics and applications

8 Lateral Earth Pressure

Learning outcomes

Earth pressure at rest

Active and passive earth pressure

Rankine's theory: granular soils, active earth pressure

Rankine's theory: granular soils, passive earth pressure

Rankine's theory: cohesive soils

Coulomb's wedge theory: active earth pressure

Coulomb's wedge theory: passive earth pressure


Choice of method for determination of active pressure

Backfill material

Influence of wall yield on design

Design parameters for different soil types


9 Retaining Structures

Learning outcomes

Main types of earth retaining structures

Gravity walls

Embedded walls

Failure modes of earth retaining structures

Design of gravity retaining walls

Design of sheet pile walls

Braced excavations

Reinforced soil

Soil nailing


10 Bearing Capacity and Shallow Foundations

Learning outcomes

Bearing capacity terms

Types of foundation

Ultimate bearing capacity of a foundation

Determination of the safe bearing capacity

The effect of groundwater on bearing capacity

Developments in bearing capacity equations

Designing spread foundations to Eurocode 7

Non-homogeneous soil conditions

Estimates of bearing capacity from in situ testing


11 Pile Foundations

Learning outcomes


Classification of piles

Method of installation

Pile load testing

Determination of the bearing capacity of a pile

Designing pile foundations to Eurocode 7

Pile groups


12 Foundation Settlement and soil compression

Learning outcomes

Settlement of a foundation

Immediate settlement

Consolidation settlement

Application of consolidation test results

General consolidation

Eurocode 7 serviceability limit state

Isotropic consolidation

Two-dimensional stress paths


13 Rate of Foundation Settlement

Learning outcomes

Analogy of consolidation settlement

Distribution of the initial excess pore pressure, ui

Terzaghi's theory of consolidation

Average degree of consolidation

Drainage path length

Determination of the coefficient of consolidation, cv, from the consolidation test

Determination of the permeability coefficient from the consolidation test

Determination of the consolidation coefficient from the triaxial test

The model law of consolidation

Consolidation during construction

Consolidation by drainage in two and three dimensions

Numerical determination of consolidation rates

Construction pore pressures in an earth dam

Numerical solutions for two- and three-dimensional consolidation

Sand drains


14 Stability of Slopes

Learning outcomes

Planar failures

Rotational failures

Slope stability design charts

Wedge failure

Slope stability analysis to Eurocode 7


15 Compaction and Soil Mechanics Aspects of Highway Design

Learning outcomes

Field compaction of soils

Laboratory compaction of soils

Specification of the field compacted density

Field measurement tests

Highway design


16 An introduction to geomechanical modelling

Learning outcomes

Constitutive models and their use in geotechnical engineering

Micro and macro models

Elastic models: linear, on-linear, isotropic and anisotropic

Applications and limitations of elastic models

Introduction to plasticity theory

Elasto-plastic models

Applications of elasto-plastic models



Ian Smith is an internationally recognized, senior academic with 6 years of Head/Dean of School experience and 25 years of teaching experience in Geotechnical Engineering. In 2017 he left his senior academic position at Edinburgh Napier University to establish his own consultancy and offer freelance services to geotechnical engineering and to education.

I. Smith, Head of the School of Engineering and the Built Environment at Edinburgh Napier University