A new bounding surface model for thermal cyclic behaviour

C. Zhou, K. Y. Fong, Charles Wang Wai Ng

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)


To accurately predict soil volume changes under thermal cycles is of great importance for analysing the performance of many earth structures such as the energy pile and energy storage system. Most of the existing thermo-mechanical models focus on soil behaviour under monotonic thermal loading only, and they are not able to capture soil volume changes under thermal cycles. In this study, a constitutive model is proposed to simulate volume changes of saturated soil subjected to cyclic heating and cooling. Two surfaces are defined and used: a bounding surface and a memory surface. The bounding surface and memory surface are mainly controlled by the preconsolidation pressure (a function of plastic volumetric strain) and the maximum stress experienced by the soil, respectively. Under thermal cycles, the distance of the two surfaces and plastic modulus increase with an accumulation of plastic strain. By adopting the double surface concept, a new elastoplastic model is derived from an existing single bounding surface thermo-mechanical model. Comparisons between model predictions and experimental results reveal that the proposed model is able to capture soil volume changes under thermal cycles well. The plastic strain accumulates under thermal cycles, but at a decreasing rate, until stabilization.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1656-1666
Number of pages11
JournalInternational Journal for Numerical and Analytical Methods in Geomechanics
Issue number16
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • constitutive relations
  • cyclic
  • thermal effects

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computational Mechanics
  • Materials Science(all)
  • Geotechnical Engineering and Engineering Geology
  • Mechanics of Materials

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