Soil Mechanics


To understand the physical basis of patterns of water flow and water pressures in soils, the processes of primary consolidation, and the basics of the shear strength of soil.

General characterization





Responsible teacher

Nuno Manuel da Costa Guerra


Weekly - 5

Total - 84

Teaching language





- Folhas da disciplina Mecânica dos Solos C, FCT, UNL

Bibliografia Complementar

- Mecânica dos Estados Crítico, Solos saturados e não saturados, E. Maranha das Neves, IST-Press

- Mecânica dos Solos -Vol. 1, M. Matos Fernandes, FEUP

- An Introduction to the Mechanics of Soils and Foundations, John Atkinson, 2000.

- Soil Mechanics and Foundations, Muni Budhu, John Wiley and Sons, Inc. New Jersey,

Teaching method

Classes are theoretical, practical and laboratory. Concepts are introduced in theoretical classes, where simple examples of application are presented. In the practical classes, students apply the concepts to practical examples. In the laboratory classes, students perform laboratory tests in order to complement the theory and practical application with experimental teaching. Evaluation has theoretical, practical and experimental components.

Evaluation method

Two tests or final exam, plus reports from laboratory classes.

Subject matter

1.Introduction to Geotechnics. Soil mechanics, rock mechanics and engineering geology.

2.Classification of soils: identification; basic concepts; composition of soils; vertical geostatic stresses; principle of effective stresses; earthp ressure coefficient

3.Seepage in porous media; Bernoulli equation; Darcy''''''''''''''''s law; coefficient of permeability; onde dimensional seepage; stresses in soils under seepage; bi-dimensionalseepage

4.Deformability and strength of soils; drained and undrained behavior; laboratory tests; behavior under isotropic and oedometer loading; critical state; peak states; critical state models.

5.Time-dependent behavior. Terzaghi''''''''''''''''s theory of consolidation. Secondary consolidation.

6.Compaction of soils: fundamental concepts; compaction curves; laboratory and field compaction; experimental landfills.

7.Common geosynthetics and their principal functions


Programs where the course is taught: