The liquefaction potential of clean and silty sands is examined on the basis of the field measurement of the shear-wave velocity, Vs. The starting point is the database of 225 case histories supporting the Andrus-Stokoe Vs-based liquefaction chart for sands, silts, and gravels. Only clean and silty sands with nonplastic fines are considered, resulting in a reduced database of 110 case histories, which are plotted separately by type of deposit. A line of constant cyclic shear strain, γcl≈0.03%, is recommended for liquefaction evaluation of recent uncompacted clean and silty sand fills and earthquake magnitude, Mw=7.5. The geologically recent natural silty sand sites in the Imperial Valley of southern California have significantly higher liquefaction resistance as a result of preshaking caused by the high seismic activity in the valley. A line of constant cyclic shear strain, γcl≈0.1–0.2%, is recommended for practical use in the Imperial Valley. Additional research including revisiting available Vs-based and penetration-based databases is proposed to generalize the results of the paper and develop liquefaction charts that account more realistically for deposit type, seismic history, and geologic age.


Civil and Environmental Engineering



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