Geotechnical and Materials

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Overview

Geotechnical engineering is the study of soil properties and how we can use them, or modify them to allow their use in civil engineering practice. The research performed at the University of Houston examines the geotechnical aspects of building foundations including instrumentation of and testing deep piles to determine new ways to sense failures and model data. Research is also being conducted to develop backfill material so that plastic pipes can be used effectively in the subsurface, and on several geotechnical aspects of road construction.

 

Facilities

The University of Houston maintains comprehensive soils and materials laboratories. These labs allow for the testing of the structural properties of concretes, grouts and composite materials, as well as for the determination of soil and rock properties under both static and dynamic loading conditions. The UH Geotechnical lab is equipped with a computer-controlled dynamic testing machine that allows for the application of two independent modes of loading (e.g. axial and torsional).

 

Examples of Specific Research Projects:

  • Predictions of Embankment Settlement Over Soft Soils.
    Texas Department of Transportation
    C. Vipulanandan and Ö. Bilgin
  • Down-hole Penetrometer for Drilled Shaft Construction
    Texas Department of Transportation
    C. Vipulanandan and Ö. Bilgin
  • Characterizing the Backfill Around Water Pipelines: Compare Direct Push Method to Nuclear Gage Method.
    Lockwood Andrews and Newnam Inc.
    C. Vipulanandan
  • Review Current Practice for Bedding for Large Diameter Pipes in the City of Houston.
    City of Houston.
    C. Vipulanandan
  • Investigate Grouts for Joints and Quality Control in Large Diameter Water Pipes in the City of Houston.
    City of Houston.
    C. Vipulanandan
  • New Sandwich Pipe for Corrosion Resistance and Durability.
    NSF and Texas Higher Education Board-Advance Research Program (ARP).
    C. Vipulanandan
  • Use of Waste Foundry Sands in Transportation Applications.
    Texas Department of Transportation.
    C. Vipulanandan
  • Durability of Grouts and Grouted Sand Materials.
    Various Industries.
    C. Vipulanandan