Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
First Advisor's Name
Seung Jae Lee
First Advisor's Committee Title
Second Advisor's Name
Hector R. Fuentes
Second Advisor's Committee Title
Third Advisor's Name
Third Advisor's Committee Title
Fourth Advisor's Name
Fourth Advisor's Committee Title
morphology, volume, surface area, size, granular material, course aggregate, multiscale mechanics
Date of Defense
Granular materials such as soil and aggregate, are ubiquitous in nature and the understanding of their mechanical behavior is of great importance to better predict and design the civil infrastructure. The particle geometry is a key information to robustly establish the link between the underlying grain-scale mechanisms and the macroscopic behavior of granular materials. However, the characteristics of the particle geometry remain to be better understood. For example, we do not know how the volume is related to the surface area for irregularly shaped particles in general. Their relation clearly depends on the morphology, dictating that volume, surface area, and morphology are interrelated. Then, the remaining question is how the size of a particle would be related to those three geometric properties. The interrelation of these four geometry parameters is the key information to fundamentally understand their concerted influence on the complex behavior of granular materials, but we do not have the answer in the body of knowledge yet.
The research in this dissertation advances the understanding of grain-scale origin of the complex macroscale behavior of granular materials and creates a set of new knowledge as follows: (i) This study systematically addresses the influence of coarse aggregate angularity on cemented granular materials. It shows that cemented granular materials with round aggregates have superior small-strain performance, while the materials with angular aggregates have superior large-strain performance; (ii) This study develops a new theory for comprehensive 3D particle geometry characterization by proposing a formulation M = A/V×L/6, which translates the 3D particle morphology M as a function of surface area A, volume V, and size L; (iii) This dissertation is benefited by the early adoption of 3D-printing for geomechanical testing. Laboratory direct shear tests have been conducted on 3D-printed synthetic particles with different geometry, to robustly correlate the geometric properties of particles to geomechanical properties of the granular materials. (iv) This study unravels, for the first time, the power law relationship between A/V ratio and V for coarse aggregate in nature. This relationship is the key to predict morphology using volume measurement only, thus significantly reducing the effort of particle geometry characterization.
Bhattacharya, Sumana, "Decoding Geometric Origin of Geomechanical Properties" (2019). FIU Electronic Theses and Dissertations. 4295.
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