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Title: Finite element analysis of a reinforced earth wall
Authors: Al-Hussaini, Mosaid M.
Johnson, Lawrence D.
Keywords: Finite element method
Reinforced earth
Soil mechanics
Mathematical models
Numerical models
Publisher: Soils and Pavements Laboratory (U.S.)
Engineer Research and Development Center (U.S.)
Description: Technical Report
Abstract: Reinforced earth consists of a soil mass whose engineering characteristics and performance have been improved by the introduction of small quantities of frictional material that possesses a relatively high tensile strength. The analysis of a reinforced earth system which incorporates metal strips placed at known intervals in the vertical and transverse directions within the soil mass is a complex problem. The complexity arises from the fact that reinforced earth is a three-dimensional problem and cannot be solved without imposing simplification with regard to the mechanical behavior of the system as well as the constitutive relationship governing the interaction between various components of the reinforced earth mass. The investigation reported herein describes a simplified approach for analyzing the instrumented reinforced earth wall which was previously constructed and loaded to failure at the U. S. Army Engineer Waterways Experiment Station. The three-dimensional problem was approximated by a structurally equivalent two-dimensional system and a two-dimensional finite element method was used in the analysis. The nonlinear behavior of the earth fill of the reinforced earth wall was simulated by hyperbolic formulation. The behavior of the metal skin element and reinforcing strips was assumed linear elastic until the yield stress was reached; thereafter, these metal components were assumed to fail plastically. Interface elements, to accommodate slippage between components of the reinforced earth wall, were also employed in the analysis.
Rights: Approved for public release; distribution is unlimited.
Appears in Collections:Technical Report

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