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uscs lecture - CE 467L Page 1 of 2 SOIL CLASSIFICATION...

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CE 467L Page 1 of 2 SOIL CLASSIFICATION Purpose of a “classification system”: 1. To establish a standardized language for communicating/describing soil types for engineering purposes. 2. To group soils according to common characteristics and common engineering behavior (e.g. clays with same I p , sands with same C u , etc.) UNIFIED SOIL CLASSIFICATION SYSTEM (USCS) I. Background/fundamentals A. Originally developed for airfield construction ~ World War II B. Two (2) primary divisions: 1) Coarse grained soils : predominant particle size > 0.075 mm, i.e. sand and gravel. Characterized by PSD test results. 2) Fine-grained soils : predominant particle size < 0.075 mm, i.e. silt and clay. Characterized by plasticity tests. Note: There are two (2) “types” of fine-grained soils: i. Inorganic ii. Organic (contains plant or animal residues) – not covered in this class! C. Terminology/definitions: G = gravel S = sand M = silt (comes from the Swedish word meaning silt) C = clay W = well graded
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This note was uploaded on 09/13/2010 for the course CE 467L taught by Professor Rechenmacher during the Spring '10 term at USC.

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uscs lecture - CE 467L Page 1 of 2 SOIL CLASSIFICATION...

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