One of the main practical difficulties attended with tunnel construction is related to underground water. Uncontrolled water behavior may cause extra loads on the lining, mechanical instability, and unfavorable environmental problems. Estimating underground water inflow rate to the tunnels is a complex skill. The common calculation methods are: empirical methods, analytical solutions, numerical solutions based on the equivalent continuous porous media. In this research the rate of underground water inflow to the Tabriz metro first line tunnel has been investigated by numerical finite difference method using FLAC2D software. Comparing results of Heuer analytical method and numerical simulation showed good agreement with each other. Fully coupled and one-way coupled hydro mechanical states as well as water-free conditions in the soil around the tunnel are used in numerical models and these models have been applied to evaluate the loading value on the tunnel support system. Results showed that the fully coupled hydro mechanical analysis estimated more axial forces, moments and shear forces in linings, so this type of analysis is more conservative and reliable method for design of tunnel lining system. As sensitivity analysis, inflow water rates into the tunnel were evaluated in different soil permeability, underground water levels and depths of the tunnel. Result demonstrated that water level in constant depth of the tunnel is more sensitive factor for water inflow rate to the tunnel in comparison of other parameters investigated in the sensitivity analysis.
Thermogravimetry has been popularized as a thermal characterization technique since the 1950s. It aims at investigating the weight loss against both reaction time and temperature, whilst being able to characterize the evolved gases from the volatile components of the organic material being tested using an appropriate hyphenated analytical technique. In an effort to characterize and identify the reclaimed waste from an unsanitary landfill site, this approach was initiated. Solid waste (SW) reclaimed from an active landfill site in the State of Kuwait was collected and prepared for characterization in accordance with international protocols. The SW was segregated and its major components were identified after washing and air drying. Shredding and cryomilling was conducted on the plastic solid waste (PSW) component to yield a material that is representative for further testing and characterization. The material was subjected to five heating rates (b) with minimal repeatable weight for high accuracy thermogravimetric analysis (TGA) following the recommendation of the International Confederation for Thermal Analysis and Calorimetry (ICTAC). The TGA yielded thermograms that showed an off-set from typical behavior of commercial grade resin which was attributed to contact of material with soil and thermal/photo-degradation.
Dynamic properties of soil in small strains, especially for geotechnical engineers, are important for describing the behavior of soil and estimation of the earth structure deformations and structures, especially significant structures. This paper presents the effect of density on the shear modulus and damping ratio of saturated clean sand at various isotropic confining pressures. For this purpose, the specimens were compared with two different relative densities, loose Dr = 30% and dense Dr = 70%. Dynamic parameters were attained from a series of consolidated undrained fixed – free type torsional resonant column tests in small strain. Sand No. 161 is selected for this paper. The experiments show that by increasing sand density and confining pressure, the shear modulus increases and the damping ratio decreases.
This paper is going to discuss two issues encountered in using PLAXIS. Both issues were monitored during application of PLAXIS to estimate the excavation-induced displacement. Column Soil Mixing (CSM) was applied to stabilise the excavation. It was understood that the estimated excavation induced deformation at the top of the CSM blocks highly depends on the material type defining pavement material adjacent to the CSM blocks. Cohesive material for pavement will result in the unrealistic connection between pavement and CSM even by defining an interface element. To find the most realistic approach, the interface defined in three different manners (1) no interface elements were applied (2) a non-cohesive soil layer was defined between pavement and CSM block to represent the friction between these materials (3) built-in interface elements in PLAXIS was used to define the boundary between the pavement and the CSM block. The result showed that the option 2 would result in more realistic results. The second issue was in the modelling of the contact line between the CSM block and an inclined layer underneath. The analysis result showed that the excavation-induced deformation highly depends on how the PLAXIS user defines the contact area. It was understood that if the contact area had defined as a point in which CSM block had intersected the layer underneath the estimated lateral displacement of CSM block would be unrealistically lower than the model in which the contact area was defined as a line.
Comparative research has been conducted to allow us to determine the content of macro and microelements in the vegetative and reproductive organs of grass pea and the quality of grass pea seeds, as well as to identify the possibility of grass pea growth on soils contaminated by heavy metals. The experiment was conducted on an agricultural field subjected to contamination from the Non-Ferrous-Metal Works (MFMW) near Plovdiv, Bulgaria. The experimental plots were situated at different distances of 0.5 km and 8 km, respectively, from the source of pollution. On reaching commercial ripeness the grass pea plants were gathered. The composition of the macro and microelements in plant materials (roots, stems, leaves, seeds), and the dry matter content, sugars, proteins, fats and ash contained in the grass pea seeds were determined. Translocation factors (TF) and bioaccumulation factor (BCF) were also determined. The quantitative measurements were carried out through inductively-coupled plasma (ICP). The grass pea plant can successfully be grown on soils contaminated by heavy metals. Soil pollution with heavy metals does not affect the quality of the grass pea seeds. The seeds of the grass pea contain significant amounts of nutrients (K, P, Cu, Fe Mn, Zn) and protein (23.18-29.54%). The distribution of heavy metals in the organs of the grass pea has a selective character, which reduces in the following order: leaves > roots > stems > seeds. BCF and TF values were greater than one suggesting efficient accumulation in the above ground parts of grass pea plant. Grass pea is a plant that is tolerant to heavy metals and can be referred to the accumulator plants. The results provide valuable information about the chemical and nutritional composition of the seeds of the grass pea grown on contaminated soils in Bulgaria. The high content of macro and microelements and the low concentrations of toxic elements in the grass pea grown in contaminated soil make it possible to use the seeds of the grass pea as animal feed.
In order to study the variation in settlement of soil under a dyke dam, the modelisation in our study consists of applying an imposed displacement at the base of the mass of soil (consisting of a saturated sand). The imposed displacement follows the evolution of acceleration of the earthquake of Boumerdes 2003 in Algeria. Moreover, the gravity load is taken into consideration by taking account the specific weight of the materials constituting the dyke. The results obtained show that the gravity loads have a direct influence on the evolution of settlement, especially at the center of the dyke where these loads are higher.
Produced water (PW), which is water extracted along with oil, is the largest waste stream in the oil and gas industry. With the proper treatment, this wastewater can be used in agricultural irrigation. This study evaluated the effects the application of PW treated by electroflocculation (EF) and combined electroflocculation-reverse osmosis (EF-RO) on soil salinity and sodification parameters. Excessive sodium levels in PW treated by EF may affect soil structural stability and plant growth, and tends to accumulate in upper layers, displacing the nutrient K to deeper layers of the soil profile. PW treated by EF-RO did not promote salinization and soil sodification, indicating that this combined technique may be a viable alternative for oily water treatment aiming at irrigation use in semiarid regions.
By using partial factors of safety, uncertainties due to the inherent variability of the soil properties and loads are taken into account in the geotechnical design process. According to the reliability index concept in Eurocode-0 in conjunction with Eurocode-7 a minimum safety level of β = 3.8 for reliability class RC2 shall be established. The reliability of the system depends heavily on the choice of the prespecified safety factor and the choice of the characteristic soil properties. The safety factors stated in the standards are mainly based on experience. However, no general accepted method for the calculation of a characteristic value within the current design practice exists. In this study, a laterally loaded monopile is investigated and the influence of the chosen quantile values of the deterministic system, calculated with p-y springs, will be presented. Monopiles are the most common foundation concepts for offshore wind energy converters. Based on the calculations for non-cohesive soils, a recommendation for an appropriate quantile value for the necessary safety level according to the standards for a deterministic design is given.
In non-cohesive soil, onshore wind turbines are often found on shallow foundations with a circular or octagonal shape. For the current generation of wind turbines, shallow foundations with very large breadths are required. The foundation support costs thus represent a considerable portion of the total construction costs. Therefore, an economic optimization of the type of foundation is highly desirable. A conceivable alternative foundation type would be a pier foundation, which combines the load transfer over the foundation area at the pier base with the transfer of horizontal loads over the shaft surface of the pier. The present study aims to evaluate the load-bearing behavior of a pier foundation based on comprehensive parametric studies. Thereby, three-dimensional numerical simulations of both pier and shallow foundations are developed. The evaluation of the results focuses on the rotational stiffnesses of the proposed soil-foundation systems. In the design, the initial rotational stiffness is decisive for consideration of natural frequencies, whereas the rotational secant stiffness for a maximum load is decisive for serviceability considerations. A systematic analysis of the results at different load levels shows that the application of the typical pier foundation is presumably limited to relatively small onshore wind turbines.
Selenium (Se) is an essential micro-nutrient for human and animals but it is highly toxic. Its organic compounds play an important role in biochemistry and nutrition of the cells. Concentration levels of this element in the different regions of the world vary considerably. This study aimed to compare the availability and levels of the Se in some rural areas of the Balkan Peninsula and relationship with the concentrations of other trace elements. For this purpose soil samples and wheat grains from different regions of Bulgaria, Serbia, Nord Macedonia, Romania, and Greece situated far from large industrial centers have been analyzed. The main methods for their determination were the atomic spectral techniques – atomic absorption and plasma atomic emission. As a result of this study, data on microelements levels from the main grain-producing regions of the Balkan Peninsula were determined and systematized. The presented results confirm the low levels of Se in this region: 0.222– 0.962 mg.kg-1 in soils and 0.001 - 0.005 mg.kg-1 in wheat grains and require measures to offset the effect of this deficiency.
This paper represents the basic idea and mechanisms associated with the durability of geomembranes and discusses the factors influencing the service life and temperature of geomembrane liners. Geomembrane durability is stated as field performance and laboratory test outcomes under various conditions. Due to the high demand of geomembranes as landfill barriers and their crucial role in sensitive projects, sufficient service life of geomembranes is very important, therefore in this paper, the durability, the effect of temperature on geomembrane and the role of this type of reinforcement in different types of soil will be discussed. Also, the role of geomembrane in the earthquake will be considered in the last part of the paper.
Raindrops and overland flow both are erosive parameters but they do not act by the same way. The overland flow alone tends to shear the soil horizontally and concentrates into rills. In the presence of rain, the soil particles are removed from the soil surface in the form of a uniform sheet layer. In addition to this, raindrops falling on the flow roughen the water and soil surface depending on the flow depth, and retard the velocity, therefore influence shear velocity and Manning’s factor. To investigate this part, agricultural sandy soil, rainfall simulator and a laboratory soil tray of 0.2x1x3 m were the base of this work. Five overland flow depths of 0; 3.28; 4.28; 5.16; 5.60; 5.80 mm were generated under a rainfall intensity of 217.2 mm/h. Sediment concentration control is based on the proportionality of depth/microtopography. The soil loose is directly related to the presence of rain splash on thin sheet flow. The effect of shear velocity on sediment concentration is limited by the value of 5.28 cm/s. In addition to this, the rain splash reduces the soil roughness by breaking the soil crests. The rainfall intensity is the major factor influencing depth and soil erosion. In the presence of rainfall, the shear velocity of the flow is due to two simultaneous effects. The first, which is horizontal, comes from the flow and the second, vertical, is due to the raindrops.
Since Taiwan is located between the Eurasian and Filipino plates and earthquakes often thus occur. The coastal plains in western Taiwan are alluvial plains, and the soils of the alluvium are mostly from the Lao-Shan belt in the central mountainous area of southern Taiwan. It could come mostly from sand/shale and slate. The previous investigation found that the soils in the Kaohsiung area of southern Taiwan are mainly composed of slate, shale, quartz, low-plastic clay, silt, silty sand and so on. It can also be found from the past earthquakes that the soil in Kaohsiung is highly susceptible to soil subsidence due to liquefaction. Insufficient bearing capacity of building will cause soil liquefaction disasters. In this study, the boring drilling data from nine districts among the Love River Basin in the city center, and some factors affecting liquefaction include the content of fines (FC), standard penetration test N value (SPT N), the thickness of clay layer near ground-surface, and the thickness of possible liquefied soil were further discussed for liquefaction potential as well as groundwater level. The results show that the liquefaction potential is higher in the areas near the riverside, the backfill area, and the west area of the study area. This paper also uses the old paleo-geological map, soil particle distribution curve, compared with LPI map calculated from the analysis results. After all the parameters finally were studied for five sub zones in the Love River Basin by maximum-minimum method, it is found that both of standard penetration test N value and the thickness of the clay layer will be most influential.
Mixtures of sand and clay are frequently used to serve for specific purposes in several engineering practices. In environmental engineering, liner layers and cover layers are common for controlling waste disposal facilities. These layers are exposed to moisture and temperature fluctuation specially when existing in unsaturated condition. The relationship between soil suction and water content for these materials is essential for understanding their unsaturated behavior and properties such as retention capacity and unsaturated follow (hydraulic conductivity). This study is aimed at investigating retention capacity for two sand-natural expansive clay mixtures (15% (C15) and 30% (C30) expansive clay) at two ambient temperatures within the range of 5 -50 °C. Soil water retention curves (SWRC) for these materials were determined at these two ambient temperatures using different salt solutions for a wide range of suction (up to 200MPa). The results indicate that retention capacity of C15 mixture underwent significant changes due to temperature variations. This effect tends to be less visible when the clay fraction is doubled (C30). In addition, the overall volume change is marginally affected by high temperature within the range considered in this study.
South Africa, a water scarce country, experiences the phenomenon that its life supporting natural water resources is seriously threatened by the users that are totally dependent on it. South Africa is globally applauded to have of the best and most progressive water laws and policies. There are however growing concerns regarding natural water resource quality deterioration and a critical void in the management of natural resources and compliance to policies due to increasing institutional uncertainties and failures. These are in accordance with concerns of many South African researchers and practitioners that call for a change in paradigm from talk to practice and a more constructive, practical approach to governance challenges in the management of water resources. A qualitative theory-building case study through longitudinal action research was conducted from 2014 to 2017. The research assessed whether a strategic positioned institutional agent can be parlayed to facilitate and execute WRM on catchment level by engaging multiple stakeholders in a polycentric setting. Through a critical realist approach a distinction was made between ex ante self-deterministic human behaviour in the realist realm, and ex post governance-management in the constructivist realm. A congruence analysis, including Toulmin’s method of argumentation analysis, was utilised. The study evaluated the unique case of a self-steering local water management institution, the Impala Water Users Association (WUA) in the Pongola River catchment in the northern part of the KwaZulu-Natal Province of South Africa. Exploiting prevailing water resource threats, it expanded its ancillary functions from 20,000 to 300,000 ha. Embarking on WRM activities, it addressed natural water system quality assessments, social awareness, knowledge support, and threats, such as: soil erosion, waste and effluent into water systems, coal mining, and water security dimensions; through structured engagement with 21 different catchment stakeholders. By implementing a proposed polycentric governance-management model on a catchment scale, the WUA achieved to fill the void. It developed a foundation and capacity to protect the resilience of the natural environment that is critical for freshwater resources to ensure long-term water security of the Pongola River basin. Further work is recommended on appropriate statutory delegations, mechanisms of sustainable funding, sufficient penetration of knowledge to local levels to catalyse behaviour change, incentivised support from professionals, back-to-back expansion of WUAs to alleviate scale and cost burdens, and the creation of catchment data monitoring and compilation centres.
Over recent years, due to increased population and increased waste production, groundwater protection has become more important, therefore, designing engineered barrier systems such as landfill liners to prevent the entry of leachate into groundwater should be done with greater accuracy. These measures generally involve the application of low permeability soils such as clays. Bentonite is a natural clay with low permeability which makes it a suitable soil for using in liners. Also zeolite with high cation exchange capacity can help to reduce of hazardous materials risk. Bentonite expands when wet, absorbing as much as several times its dry mass in water. This property may effect on some structural properties of soil such as shear strength. In present study, shear strength parameters are determined by both leachates polluted and not polluted bentonite-amended zeolite soil with mixing rates (B/Z) of 5%-10% and 20% with unconfined compression test to obtain the differences. It is shown that leachate presence causes reduction in resistance in general.
This paper presents numerical flow and slope stability simulations in three typical sections of earth dams built in tropical regions, two homogeneous with different slope inclinations, and the other one heterogeneous with impermeable core. The geotechnical material parameters used in this work were obtained from a lab testing of physical characterization, compaction, consolidation, variable load permeability and saturated triaxial type CD for compacted soil samples with standard proctor energy at optimum moisture content (23%), optimum moisture content + 2% and optimum moisture content +5%. The objective is to analyze the general behavior of earth dams built in rainy regions where optimum moisture is exceeded. The factor of safety is satisfactory for the three sections compacted in all moisture content during the stages of operation and end of construction. On The other hand, the rapid drawdown condition is the critical phase for homogeneus dams configuration, the factor of safety obtained were unsatisfactory. In general, the heterogeneous dam behavior is more efficient due to the fact that the slopes are made up of gravel, which favors the dissipation of pore pressures during the rapid drawdown. For the critical phase, the slopes should have lower inclinations of the upstream and downstream slopes to guarantee stability, although it increases the costs.
In this research, the behavior of monopiles, under lateral loads, was investigated with vertical and oblique piles by Finite Element Method. In engineering practice when soil-pile interaction comes to the picture some simplifications are applied to reduce the design time. As a simplified replacement of soil and pile interaction analysis, pile could be replaced by a column. The height of the column would be equal to the free length of the pile plus a portion of the embedded length of it. One of the important factors studied in this study was that columns with an equivalent length (free length plus a part of buried depth) could be used instead of soil and pile modeling. The results of the analysis show that the more internal friction angle of the soil increases, the more the bearing capacity of the soil is achieved. This additional length is 6 to 11 times of the pile diameter in dense soil although in loose sandy soil this range might increase.
Direct shear test is widely used in soil mechanics experiment to determine the shear strength parameters of granular soils. For analysis of soil stability problems such as bearing capacity, slope stability and lateral pressure on soil retaining structures, the shear strength parameters must be known well. In the present study, shear strength parameters are determined in silty-sand mixtures. Direct shear tests are performed on 161 Firoozkooh sand with different silt content at a relative density of 70% in three vertical stress of 100, 150, and 200 kPa. Wet tamping method is used for soil sample preparation, and the results include diagrams of shear stress versus shear deformation and sample height changes against shear deformation. Accordingly, in different silt percent, the shear strength parameters of the soil such as internal friction angle and dilation angle are calculated and compared. According to the results, when the sample contains up to 10% silt, peak shear strength and internal friction angle have an upward trend. However, if the sample contains 10% to 50% of silt a downward trend is seen in peak shear strength and internal friction angle.
Coastal embankments play an important role in coastal structures by reducing the effect of the wave forces and controlling the movement of sediments. Many coastal areas are underlain by weak and compressible soils. Estimation of during construction settlement of coastal embankments is highly important in design and safety control of embankments and appurtenant structures. Accordingly, selecting and establishing of an appropriate model with a reasonable level of complication is one of the challenges for engineers. Although there are advanced models in the literature regarding design of embankments, there is not enough information on the prediction of their associated settlement, particularly in coastal areas having considerable soft soils. Marine engineering study in Iran is important due to the existence of two important coastal areas located in the northern and southern parts of the country. In the present study, the validity of Terzaghi’s consolidation theory has been investigated. In addition, the settlement of these coastal embankments during construction is predicted by using special methods in PLAXIS software by the help of appropriate boundary conditions and soil layers. The results indicate that, for the existing soil condition at the site, some parameters are important to be considered in analysis. Consequently, a model is introduced to estimate the settlement of the embankments in such geotechnical conditions.
Selection of soil bearing capacity is an important issue that should be investigated under different conditions. The bearing capacity of foundation around of soil slope is based on the active and passive forces. On the other hand, due to extension of urban structures, it is inevitable to put the foundations together. Concerning the two cases mentioned above, investigating the behavior of adjacent foundations which are constructed besides soil slope is essential. It should be noted that, according to the conditions, the bearing capacity of adjacent foundations can be less or more than mat foundations. Also, soil reinforcement increases the bearing capacity of adjacent foundations, and the amount of its increase depends on the distance between foundations. In this research, based on numerical studies, a method is presented for evaluating ultimate bearing capacity of adjacent foundations at different intervals. In the present study, the effect of foundation width, the center to center distance of adjacent foundations and reinforced soil has been investigated on the bearing capacity of adjacent foundations beside soil slope. The results indicate that, due to interference of failure surfaces created under foundation, it depends on their intervals and the ultimate bearing capacity of foundation varies.
Site response has a profound effect on earthquake damages. Seismic interaction of urban tunnels with surface structures could also affect seismic site response. Here, we use FLAC 2D to investigate the interaction of a single tunnel and twin tunnels-surface structures on the site response. Soil stratification and properties are selected based on Line. No 7 of the Tehran subway. The effect of surface structure is considered in two ways: Equivalent surcharge and geometrical modeling of the structure. Comparison of the results shows that consideration of the structure geometry is vital in dynamic analysis and leads to the changes in the magnitude of displacements, accelerations and response spectrum. Therefore it is necessary for the surface structures to be wholly modeled and not just considered as a surcharge in dynamic analysis. The use of twin tunnel also leads to the reduction of dynamic residual settlement.
In recent decades, the amount of solid waste production has been rising. In the meantime, plastic waste is one of the major parts of urban solid waste, so, recycling plastic waste from water bottles has become a serious challenge in the whole world. The experimental program includes the study of the effect of waste plastic fibers on maximum dry density (MDD), optimum moisture content (OMC) with different sizes and contents. Also, one dimensional consolidation tests were carried out to evaluate the benefit of utilizing randomly distributed waste plastics fiber to improve the engineering behavior of a tested soils. Silty soil specimens were prepared and tested at five different percentages of plastic waste content (i.e. 0.25%, 0.50%, 0.75%, 1% and 1.25% by weight of the parent soil). The size of plastic chips used, are 4 mm, 8 mm and 12 mm long and 4 mm in width. The results show that with the addition of waste plastic fibers, the MDD and OMC and also the compressibility of soil decrease significantly.
In this paper, we consider the stability of a slope of 10 meters in silty gravel soils with modeling in the Geostudio Software. we intend to use the parameters of the volumetric water content and suction dependent permeability and provides relationships and graphs using the parameters obtained from gradation tests and Atterberg’s limits. Also, different conditions of the soil will be investigated, including: checking the factor of safety and deformation rates and pore water pressure in drained, non-drained and unsaturated conditions, as well as the effect of reducing the water level on other parameters. For this purpose, it is assumed that the groundwater level is at a depth of 2 meters from the ground. Then, with decreasing water level, the safety factor of slope stability was investigated and it was observed that with decreasing water level, the safety factor increased.
Varying methodologies are considered for pile design for both Russian and Western approaches. Although both approaches rely on toe and side frictional resistances, different calculation methods are proposed to estimate pile capacity. The Western approach relies on compactness (internal friction angle) of soil for cohesionless soils and undrained shear strength for cohesive soils. The Russian approach relies on grain size for cohesionless soils and liquidity index for cohesive soils. Though most recommended methods in the Western approaches are relatively simple methods to predict pile settlement, the Russian approach provides a detailed method to estimate single pile and pile group settlement. Details to calculate pile axial capacity and settlement using the Russian and Western approaches are discussed and compared against field test results.
Prediction of the ultimate bearing capacity of piles (Qu) is one of the basic issues in geotechnical engineering. So far, several methods have been used to estimate Qu, including the recently developed artificial intelligence methods. In recent years, optimization algorithms have been used to minimize artificial network errors, such as colony algorithms, genetic algorithms, imperialist competitive algorithms, and so on. In the present research, artificial neural networks based on colonial competition algorithm (ANN-ICA) were used, and their results were compared with other methods. The results of laboratory tests of short piles in clayey soils with parameters such as pile diameter, pile buried length, eccentricity of load and undrained shear resistance of soil were used for modeling and evaluation. The results showed that ICA-based artificial neural networks predicted lateral bearing capacity of short piles with a correlation coefficient of 0.9865 for training data and 0.975 for test data. Furthermore, the results of the model indicated the superiority of ICA-based artificial neural networks compared to back-propagation artificial neural networks as well as the Broms and Hansen methods.
Ultimate capacity of large diameter bored piles is usually determined from pile loading tests as recommended by several international codes and foundation design standards. However, loading of this type of piles till achieving apparent failure is practically seldom. In this paper, numerical analyses are carried out to simulate load test of a large diameter bored pile performed at the location of Alzey highway bridge project (Germany). Test results of pile load settlement relationship till failure as well as results of the base and shaft resistances are available. Apparent failure was indicated in this test by the significant increase of the induced settlement during the last load increment applied on the pile head. Measurements of this pile load test are used to assess the quality of the numerical models investigated. Three different material soil models are implemented in the analyses: Mohr coulomb (MC), Soft soil (SS), and Modified Mohr coulomb (MMC). Very good agreement is obtained between the field measured settlement and the calculated settlement using the MMC model. Results of analysis showed also that the MMC constitutive model is superior to MC, and SS models in predicting the ultimate base and shaft resistances of the large diameter bored pile. After calibrating the numerical model, behavior of large diameter bored piles under axial loads is discussed and the formation of the plastic zone around the pile is explored. Results obtained showed that the plastic zone below the base of the pile at failure extended laterally to about four times the pile diameter and vertically to about three times the pile diameter.
Workers are often required to enter unsupported trenches during the construction process, which may present serious risks. Trench failures can result in death or damage to adjacent properties, therefore trenches should be excavated with extreme precaution. Excavation work is often done in unsaturated soils, where the critical height (i.e. maximum depth that can be excavated without failure) of unsupported trenches can be more reliably estimated by considering the influence of matric suction. In this study, coupled stress/pore-water pressure analyses are conducted to investigate the critical height of sloped unsupported trenches considering the influence of pore-water pressure redistribution caused by excavating. Four different wall slopes (1.5V:1H, 2V:1H, 3V:1H, and 90°) and a vertical trench with the top 0.3 m sloped 1:1 were considered in the analyses with multiple depths of the ground water table in a sand. For comparison, the critical heights were also estimated using the limit equilibrium method for the same excavation scenarios used in the coupled analyses.
Peri-urban agriculture in Jos Nigeria serves as a major means of livelihood for both urban and peri-urban poor, and constitutes huge commercial inclination with a target market that has spanned beyond Plateau State. Yet, the sustainability of this sector is threatened by intensive application of urban refuse ash contaminated with heavy metals, as a result of the highly heterogeneous materials used in ash production. Hence, this research aimed to understand the current fertilizer employed by farmers, their perception and acceptability in utilization of household sewage sludge for agricultural purposes and their capacity in mitigating risks associated with such practice. Mixed methods approach was adopted, and data collection tools used include survey questionnaire, focus group discussion with farmers, participants and field observation. The study identified that farmers maintain a complex mixture of organic and chemical fertilizers, with mixture composition that is dependent on fertilizer availability and affordability. Also, farmers have decreased the rate of utilization of urban refuse ash due to labor and increased logistic cost and are keen to utilize household sewage sludge for soil fertility improvement but are mainly constrained by accessibility of this waste product. Nevertheless, farmers near to sewage disposal points have commenced utilization of household sewage sludge for improving soil fertility. Farmers were knowledgeable on composting but find their strategic method of dewatering and sun drying more convenient. Irrigation farmers were not enthusiastic for treatment, as they desired both water and sludge. Secondly, household sewage sludge observed in the field is heterogeneous due to nearness between its disposal point and that of urban refuse, which raises concern for possible cross-contamination of pollutants and also portrays lack of extension guidance as regards to treatment and management of household sewage sludge for agricultural purposes. Hence, farmers concerns need to be addressed, particularly in providing extension advice and establishment of decentralized household sewage sludge collection centers, for continuous availability of liquid and concentrated sludge. Urgent need is also required for the Federal Government of Nigeria to increase commitment towards empowering her subsidiaries for efficient discharge of corporate responsibilities.