Document Type


Date of Award

Spring 5-31-2003

Degree Name

Master of Science in Civil Engineering - (M.S.)


Civil and Environmental Engineering

First Advisor

Raj P. Khera

Second Advisor

Dorairaja Raghu

Third Advisor

John R. Schuring


In this study, an analysis was done on a particular clay layer found in the city of Belem do Para, Brazil. Various soil tests were conducted including a consolidation analysis. Data were gathered and analyzed in order to obtain a better understanding of how the soil responds under certain loading conditions. There have been no previous studies done on this material and so when it has been encountered in the field geotechnical engineers provide the safest, but not necessarily best design method possible. In the case of large buildings, piles are driven past this material to competent sand. There have been many instances where small buildings or homes were built on a highly compacted sand layer that overlies this clay. Eventually these structures failed due to differential settlement (Alencar, 1999). The data obtained from this analysis will be used as a guide to the construction of certain structures in this area.

The area of study was chosen because there have been no previous studies done on this material and since the city is fairly young, the problem of long-term settlement could cause a threat to existing structures in which certain design criteria may have been overlooked.



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