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Properties and behaviour of rocks. Formation, properties and classification of soils. Strength and stiffness of soils. Applications to slopes, retaining walls, and site characterisation.
Soil Mechanics provides essential background and concepts for soil characterisation and classification, and the evaluation of mechanical behaviour of soils under applied loads. It is the first core course in our CNRE qualifications focusing on soil as an engineering material. ENCN253 is taught as a conventional single-semester course comprising lectures, tutorials and laboratories. The concepts and calculations learned in ENCN253 are used extensively in Geotechnical Engineering (ENCN353), Advanced Geotechnical Engineering (ENCN452) and Geotechnical Earthquake Engineering (ENCN454) courses in the Second and Third Professional Years. The course content has been developed on the assumption that ideas and understanding, as opposed to rote-learned formulae, are the backbone of successful engineering - our aim is to understand the behaviour of soil, and then use this knowledge to solve practical engineering problems and make decisions.
At the conclusion of this course you should be able to:- Interpret data and measurements from standard lab tests for the purpose of soil characterisation and classification (Module 1 and Lab activities);- Understand and apply the "Principle of Effective Stress" and explain its importance and relevance to geotechnical problems (Module 2);- Calculate static soil stresses (total and effective, vertical and horizontal) and pore water pressure for field deposits and lab test specimens (Module 2);- Analyse flow of water through soil using fundamental fluid mechanics principles (Module 3); - Describe and compare the stress-strain and deformation response of 'loose' and 'dense', 'normally consolidated' and 'overconsolidated' soils and explain the effects of confining pressure and density on soil stress-strain behaviour (Module 4);- Describe the geological and geomorphological processes responsible for the formation of soils, and relate geological processes to the likely nature and distribution of soils in different environments (Module 5)
This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop the Graduate Attributes specified below:
Critically competent in a core academic discipline of their award
Students know and can critically evaluate and, where applicable, apply this knowledge to topics/issues within their majoring subject.
Subject to approval of the Dean of Engineering and Forestry
Students must attend one activity from each section.
and Clark Fenton
a) TO PASS: You cannot pass this course unless you achieve a mark of at least 40% in the final exam. b) Assignments: All assignments can be done individually or in pairs. If done in pairs a single submission for marking is required and both students receive the same mark. Students working in pairs for the assignments are expected to work together on all parts of the assignment. It is not acceptable for students to split the assignment. Students are reminded that assignments are designed as an aid for learning, and that all parts of the syllabus are examinable. All assignments must be submitted by the due date. Late submissions may not be acceptable, or may attract a penalty depending on circumstance. If a student is unable to complete and submit an assignment by the deadline due to personal circumstances beyond their control they should discuss this with the lecturer involved as soon as possible.
Holtz, R. D. , Kovacs, William D;
An introduction to geotechnical engineering;
Soil mechanics :concepts and applications;
Spon Press, 2004.
If hard copies of the assignments are requested by the lecturer, they should be submitted to the drop box marked "ENCN 253" located on the ground floor of the Engineering CORE building. If the lecturer requests an electronic submission, then assignments should be submitted through the LEARN website. In the case of electronic submission, students must follow the naming convention and file format specified by the lecturer.Official departmental coversheets should be used for all submissions. Assignments submitted without a coversheet will receive a mark of zero.
Domestic fee $937.00
International fee $5,125.00
* Fees include New Zealand GST and do not include any programme level discount or additional course related expenses.
For further information see
Civil and Natural Resources Engineering.