Utilizing waste materials in civil engineering applications has a positive influence on the environment by reducing carbon dioxide emissions and issues associated with waste disposal. Granulated blast furnace slag (GBFS) is a by-product of the iron and steel industry, with millions of tons of slag being annually produced worldwide. Slag has been widely used in structural engineering and for stabilizing clay soils; however, studies on the effect of slag on sandy soils are scarce. This article investigates the effect of slag content on shear strength parameters through direct shear tests and unconsolidated undrained triaxial tests on mixtures of Perth sand and slag. For this purpose, sand-slag mixtures, with slag contents of 2%, 4%, and 6% by weight of samples, were tested with direct shear tests under three normal stress values, namely 100 kPa, 150 kPa, and 200 kPa. Unconsolidated undrained triaxial tests were performed under a single confining pressure of 100 kPa and relative density of 80%. The internal friction angles and shear stresses of the mixtures were determined via the direct shear tests, demonstrating that shear stresses increased with increasing normal stress and the internal friction angles and cohesion increased with increasing slag. There were no significant differences in shear stresses parameters when slag content rose from 4% to 6%. The unconsolidated undrained triaxial tests demonstrated that shear strength increased with increasing slag content.
Investigation of liquefaction susceptibility of materials that have been used in embankments, slopes, dams, and foundations is very essential. Many catastrophic geo-hazards such as flow slides, declination of foundations, and damage to earth structure are associated with static liquefaction that may occur during abrupt shearing of these materials. Many artificial backfill materials are mixtures of sand with fines and other composition. In order to provide some clarifications and evaluations on the role of fines in static liquefaction behaviour of sand sandy soils, the effect of fines on the liquefaction susceptibility of sand was experimentally examined in the present work over a range of fines content, relative density, and initial confining pressure. The results of an experimental study on various sand-fines mixtures are presented. Undrained static triaxial compression tests were conducted on saturated Perth sand containing 5% bentonite at three different relative densities (10, 50, and 90%), and saturated Perth sand containing both 5% bentonite and slag (2%, 4%, and 6%) at single relative density 10%. Undrained static triaxial tests were performed at three different initial confining pressures (100, 150, and 200 kPa). The brittleness index was used to quantify the liquefaction potential of sand-bentonite-slag mixtures. The results demonstrated that the liquefaction susceptibility of sand-5% bentonite mixture was more than liquefaction susceptibility of clean sandy soil. However, liquefaction potential decreased when both of two fines (bentonite and slag) were used. Liquefaction susceptibility of all mixtures decreased with increasing relative density and initial confining pressure.