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Re: Retaining wall design pressures

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Saturated condition and submerged condition are two different
scenarios.  In saturated case, there is just enough moisture in soil to
fill all the voids.  Obviously, the unit weight of saturated soil would
be greater than dry unit weight.  However, the moisture is not large
enough to develop hydrostatic prssures. In this situation, pressure on
wall is equal to (Coeff. of lateral earthpressure X saturated unit
weight of soil X depth under consideration).

In submerged situation, there is sufficient free water to develop
hydrostatic pressure.  Therefore, the pressure on the wall will be due
to two components:  Pressure due to submerged soil (use submerged unit
weight and coeff. of lateral earthpressure) and hydrostatic pressure.


Barry H. Welliver wrote:
> What are opinions regarding retaining wall design pressures when the
> backfill material is completely saturated i.e. water table up to the
> ground surface.
> Would the full active equivalent fluid pressure of the soil be additive
> with a full hydrostatic design pressure??
> Barry H. Welliver
> wellive(--nospam--at)