A simple experimental method to regain the mechanical behavior of naturally structured marine clays

Usama Khalid, Guan lin Ye, Santosh Kumar Yadav, Zhen Yu Yin

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


Quantitative laboratory studies on the structural behavior of natural intact marine clays require a large number of identical natural samples leading to an expensive and challenging task. This study proposes a simple method to reconstruct an artificial structured marine clay as the state of its natural intact clay at both macro and micro levels. For this purpose, the Shanghai marine clay is selected and mixed with low cement contents (1–6%). The clay-cement slurry is mixed in a container with the ice-covered sides at a low temperature about 0 ± 2 °C to postpone the hydration reactions until consolidation began. The purpose of adding cement is to generate the inter-particle bonding and structure in reconstituted samples. Initially, the reconstituted samples are consolidated under the in situ stress of 98 kPa and then under the pre-consolidation pressure of 50 kPa. Mechanical characteristics such as compression index, yield stress, unconfined compression strength, shear strength ratio, and the stress paths from triaxial tests are compared with natural intact clay accordingly. Scanning electron microscope and mercury intrusion porosimetry analyses are also performed to analyze the microstructure of clays for comparison. Furthermore, the proposed method is also examined by using natural intact marine clays of different locations and characteristics.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)275-287
Number of pages13
JournalApplied Ocean Research
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2019


  • Compressibility
  • Microstructure
  • Reconstruction method
  • Stress path
  • Structured marine clay

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ocean Engineering

Cite this