Reading: Numerical Modelling of Deformation in Preloaded Embankment over Weak Soil.


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Numerical Modelling of Deformation in Preloaded Embankment over Weak Soil.


R. Ketheeswaravenayagan ,

About R.

Road Engineer-consultant, Former MSc student, Department of Civil Engineering, University of Moratuwa

MSc (Moratuwa), BSc. Eng. Hons. (Moratuwa), AMIE (SL)

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U. G. A. Puswewala

University of Moratuwa, LK
About U. G. A.

Professor at the Department of Civil Engineering and Head of the Department of Earth Resources Engineering,

PhD (Manitoba), M.Eng (AIT, Thailand), BSc Eng. Hons. (Moratuwa), C.Eng., MIE (SL)

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This paper presents a numerical simulation of the deformations of an instrumented test pre-loaded embankment constructed over the soft soil underlying the Colombo-Katunayaka Expressway located in the Western Province of Sri Lanka. Finite Element Analysis is performed to simulate the preloaded embankment and sub-soils by using the Geo-Slope software, and by utilising the Modified Cam Clay (MCC) model and the linear elastic models available with the software. The loadings increments and other field operations are simulated in the numerical analysis identical to the processes in the field. Initial stresses and pore water pressure are imposed identical to the in-situ conditions, and a coupled consolidation analysis is subsequently performed by using the software to predict the settlement behaviours. The predicted settlements and lateral displacement profiles are compared with the observed field data.


The numerical results show that the settlement depends on the selection of the soil constitutive model, modulus value of the fill, and permeability of the soil. Also, the analysis indicates that the MCC model can be used for very soft soils. The displacement and stress variation pattern are identified in and around the embankment. It can be recommended that the proposed analysis method is a useful tool for engineering practice in soft soil environments of Sri Lankan and in cases of highway construction and development using the pre-loading method to strengthen soft soils.

How to Cite: Ketheeswaravenayagan, R. and Puswewala, U.G.A., 2007. Numerical Modelling of Deformation in Preloaded Embankment over Weak Soil.. Engineer: Journal of the Institution of Engineers, Sri Lanka, 40(4), pp.94–101. DOI:
Published on 30 Oct 2007.
Peer Reviewed


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