The Constructor

Various Applications of Soil Engineering in Construction

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The applications of soil engineering science are on the different principles of soil mechanics. Soil engineering have greater application compared to soil mechanics. All engineering problems and their solution is dealt by soil engineering. This includes the procedure of site investigation, construction of the foundation, design applications, earth retaining structures and in the construction of all the earth structures.

Different Applications of Soil Engineering in Construction

The soil engineering has proved great efficiency in various application of civil engineering field. Various applications of the same field are mentioned briefly in the below section:
  1. Soil Engineering in foundation
  2. Soil Engineering for retaining structures
  3. Soil engineering for slope stability
  4. Soil engineering for design of pavements
  5. Soil engineering for underground structures
  6. Miscellaneous application

Soil Engineering in Foundation

All the civil engineering structures are supported on or below the surface of the earth; This is applied to all structures whether it be building, bridge or dams. The construction of foundation is very much necessary to transmit the load of the structure constructed above to be transmitted below the ground in an efficient and safe manner. When a foundation is constructed and the load transmission takes place on the upper strata of the earth, we call it as shallow foundation. When the load transmission takes place at a great depth below the surface of the earth, it is termed as the deep foundation. One of the common example of deep foundation is pile foundation. The foundation engineering is an important branch of soil engineering.

Soil Engineering for Retaining Structures

Fig.1. Retaining Structure

When there is no sufficient space available to spread the soil, it becomes necessary to heap the soil. A structure constructed to maintain the slope (safe slope without collapse) of the soil is called as Retaining structures. Whenever it comes necessary to keep the soil material under different levels, the retaining structures are employed. The retaining structure employed can be relatively flexible by the construction of the retaining wall or the sheet pile.

Soil Engineering for Slope Stability

If the soil placed in large quantity is not horizontal, the slope tends to create a component of weight that makes the soil to move downwards. This creates soil instability. The slopes can be either man made, like the slopes caused due to excavation works in construction or these slopes can be natural formed by natural effects likes landslides, sedimentation, flood etc.

Soil Engineering for Underground Structures

Fig.2.Underground Tunnel Construction

For many structures that are constructed under the ground are subjected to soil pressure from all the sides. These structures must be designed based on the future soil pressure. Some of the underground structures includes tunnels, shafts, conduits.

Soil Engineering for Pavement Design

Fig.3.Pavement Construction

The construction of pavement is done on the surface of the soil. This pavement layer consists of different layers of aggregates and bitumen layer. These layers must be designed to obtain smooth surface. The soil layer below must be prepared so that the pavement is resistant towards the loading and the environmental changes.

Soil Engineering in Earth Dams

The construction of earth dams is performed to make water reservoirs. The failure of earth dam structure can cause huge damage and catastrophe. Thus, construction of earth dams requires good care in the design and construction. This demands a proper knowledge of soil engineering.

Fig.4.Earth Dam

Miscellaneous Applications of Soil Engineering

Certain miscellaneous problems associated with soil requires some guidance from the field of civil engineering. These problems include frost heave, shrinkage, swelling of the soils, soil heave and the soil subsidence. An in-depth study of soil is conducted in civil engineering. Read More: Types of Soil Movements -Causes and Recommended Suitable Foundations How to Protect Foundation Structures from Soils and Groundwater Attacks? Soil Investigation for Construction of Bridges and Culvert and Hydraulics Parameters
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