Date of Completion

Fall 11-16-2018

Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Construction Engineering


Construction Engineering


Structural and Geotechnical Engineering

Thesis Advisor

Dr. Fatih Oncul


Research has shown that the properties which govern the consolidation of dredged material are best determined using a one-dimensional finite strain consolidation theory. This method requires a complete relationship between void ratio and effective stress for all expected void ratios in a dredged layer, which can be determined from laboratory testing. The United States Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) suggests using a self-weight consolidation test apparatus to obtain void ratio/effective stress conditions for very low effective stresses. In this paper a modified laboratory testing method of a self-weight consolidation test is developed to obtain a range of void ratios and effective stress conditions at low effective stresses for material obtained from the Savannah River Harbor. Testing methods are discussed and data is analyzed using a selected one-dimensional finite strain consolidation method. Findings from the research conducted in this paper are as follows: a reliable relationship between vertical effective stress and permeability as function of void ratio can be obtained from the test methods described; there appears to be a unique void ratio/effective stress relationship and a unique void ratio/permeability relationship for the material tested; a three to four-month period is a satisfactory amount of time to obtain near 100 percent primary consolidation for materials with initial void ratios of 7.0 to 10.0; and test methods are repeatable and can produce homogeneous samples.