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Dr Ali M. Rajabi, Alireza Hossini, Alireza Heidari,
Volume 11, Issue 3 (Vol. 11 No. 3 Autumn 2017 2018)

In many rock engineering projects, accurate identification of rock strength properties is very important. Uniaxial compressive strength is one of the most important features to describe the resistive behavior of rocks which is used as an important parameter in the design of structures especially underground openings. Determination of this parameter using direct methods, including uniaxial compressive strength tests is costly and time-consuming, and also sometimes preparation of standard samples in many rocks is difficult. In such cases, the implementation of some simple and non-destructive tests and using empirical relations can increase the evaluation speed and reduce costs. These relations even regional or local (For example within a geological formation or a single lithology) can help in the estimation of these parameters in order to be used in geotechnical projects. In this study, samples of existing limestones in south west of Tehran (Capital of Iran) were prepared and uniaxial compressive strength, point load, Schmidt hammer and Shear wave velocity tests on which have been performed. Then by the statistical evaluations of the results, the empirical relations between uniaxial compressive strength and the results of other tests are obtained. The comparison between the predicted and observed values of uniaxial compressive strength represents the validity of obtained empirical relations. The application of the proposed relations for limestones in the study area and those with similar geological conditions will provide acceptable results.
Ali M. Rajabi, Hossein Khosravi,
Volume 12, Issue 4 (Vol. 12, No. 4 2019)

In general, landslides, in particular, earthquake-induced landslides, are among the phenomena that have caused great damages in recent years in Iran and the world. Although many studies have been done on the identification and description of landslides in general, the study of landslides caused by the earthquake, especially in Iran, is at the beginning stages. In a few studies, some landslides and some of their characteristics have been introduced. A magnitude 7.7 earthquake occurred in the Guilan Province was occurred on May 31, 1990. This earthquake is one of the most important earthquakes in Iran history due to its magnitude and occurrence of landslides. In various studies, the most important landslides have been listed. The development of quantitative and qualitative studies on earthquakes that have caused many landslides (such as the Manjil, Avaj, Firoozabad, Kojur, Sarein and Ahar and Varzaghan earthquakes) increase our understanding of natural disasters and, consequently, the management of the dangers resulting from them. The purpose of this research is to identify the factors affecting the occurrence of landslides caused by earthquakes, to determine the impact of each on the occurrence of this phenomenon, and also to prepare a map of earthquake hazard zonation hazard by utilizing the methods used in this research. In this study, hierarchical analysis method has been used to prioritize the factors affecting the occurrence of landslide and also the zoning of earthquake landslide hazard in the study area.
Research Methodology
The study area is located between 49˚ 30 and 4945˚ and latitudes 36º 0045" and 36º 30 52" with a surface area of ​​309.30 km2. In this research, in order to zoning the earthquake-induced landslides hazard, in addition to providing a map of landslides, seven factors influencing the occurrence of this phenomenon were identified and examined. These factors included elevation, slope, arias intensity, friction angle, adhesion, curvature of the slope and aspect. In this research, Analytic Hierarchy Process (AHP) method, one of the multi-criteria decision making models, was used with two approaches to using expert knowledge and data and expert knowledge together to prioritize the factors influencing the occurrence of landslide. Finally, two landslide hazard zonation maps were prepared. In a hierarchical analysis method related to the expert judgment, it was used to determine the priority of different criteria and sub-criteria and convert them into small amounts of oral judgments (expert opinion) based on the pair comparison, in which the decision maker preferred the factor in relation to other factors using the relevant tables, these judgments are converted into small amounts. In the method of using data and expert judgment simultaneously, first, in order to determine the priority of criteria from oral judgments (collection of expert opinions), we used to determine the importance or weight (Wi) of each sub-criterion (R) is also used to link the landslide area to each class and landslide area in the region.
The results obtained from the paired comparison of the effective factors in the occurrence of landslide show that the relative preference of the factors include the factor of arias intensity, friction angle, slope, adhesion, aspect, height and curvature of the amplitude. The greatest influence on the sub-criteria for the sub-criteria is 10-11.54, which is related to the arias factor and also the lowest effect for the sub-standard of the domain curvature factor. Also, according to the zoning maps, in the first model, 73% and in the second model, 57% of the surface area are very high and very high risk areas, which indicates the high sensitivity of the study area to the earthquake-induced earthquake phenomenon.
According to the results obtained from the verification and evaluation of the models and comparison of the mapped data with the hierarchical analysis method (using expert knowledge and data) and a method that uses only expert knowledge, the map is derived from a method where bundles of knowledge and data are used simultaneously, in order to weigh the parameters, it is more in line with the map of the landing list of the region.
According to the results obtained from the review and evaluation of the two models in a method in which knowledge and data were used together, the QS value was 0.40 and the accuracy of the method (P) was 0.016. However, in a method in which only the expert judgment used to weigh the criteria and sub-criteria, the sum of the quality and accuracy of the method were calculated to be 0.37 and 0.006, respectively. Hierarchical analysis method, in which the benchmarks and sub-criteria of benchmark knowledge and data are used together, have a better performance than the other model, and the results are closer to reality. In addition, it also works better in distinguishing between high and high risk areas../files/site1/files/124/5rajabi%DA%86%DA%A9%DB%8C%D8%AF%D9%87.pdf
Ali M Rajabi, Alireza Sajdeh,
Volume 13, Issue 4 (Vol. 13, No. 4 2020)

Concrete faced rockfill dams have been considered in recent years more than other types of dams due to their low dependency on the bed and the shape of the valley, as well as the simpler construction technology. In this regard, rockfill dams are a suitable substitute for embankment dams because of higher stability of the body and the availability of rock aggregates. On the other hand, because the permeability of rock aggregates is much higher than other materials, different methods are used to seal these types of dams. One of these methods is the use of non-impermeable concrete facing in the upstream of these dams. This particular type of gravel dams is called Concrete-Faced Rockfill Dams (CRFD). In this study, a contact element with a definition of elastic-plastic failure in the modeling process is proposed to simulate the surface separation and re-contact of the concrete face with the rockfill surface of the dam.
In this paper, behavior of a concrete faced rockfill dam under earthquake loads is investigated. For this purpose, near-field earthquake records with focal depth lower than 15 km (for example Tabas earthquake 1978, M=7.4, and San Fernando earthquake 1970, M=6.6) are used. Moreover, to study the dam behavior under dynamic loads, interaction between concrete face and rockfill part of the dam is investigated and finally, some parameters including displacement, absorbed energy and base shear are evaluated. So, finite element method and Abaqus software is used for the study. Verification of the models is carried out using the results of previous researches by conducting modal analysis and determining natural vibration period. Then, the interaction between the concrete face and rockfill part as well as the effect of water level changes in stability of dam under dynamic load is investigated. Concrete behavior is simulated using concrete damaged plasticity. Therefore, concrete density, compressive strength and tensile strength and elasticity modulus are 2350 kg/m3, 25 MPa, 3 MPa and 29 GPa, respectively. Poisson’s ratio is assumed to be 0.2. Furthermore, 4-node shell elements are used to simulate concrete face and Drucker-Prager constitutive model is used to define rockfill material behavior.
The density and Poisson’s ratio for 2B, 3C and 3B layers are 2150 kg/m3 and 0.35, respectively. The shear modulus values for these layers are respectively 8.93, 2.89, and 3.85 GPa. In order to perform the simulation, the part of the dam structure beside the bed rock and the surrounding rock is considered as fixed bearing, and only the rockfill part and concrete face of the dam is simulated. Based on this assumption that the bed is rigid, there is no need to consider the dam foundation. This method is frequently used in literature review.
All the surfaces of the dam and bed rock are considered as fixed bearing to simulate the real condition where the dam is attached to bed rock and the surrounding rock. The interaction between dam layers is defined as tie. For defining the interaction between rockfill body and concrete face, tangential and normal contacts are defined using penalty method with friction coefficient equal to 0.5. In the next step, the model is meshed using 4-node shell elements for concrete face, 8-node brick and 4-node pyramid solid elements for rockfill body. Rayleigh damping is used to simulate the structure damping. The effective length of the dam reservoir has been determined by conducting several analyzes, so that the minimum required length for reservoir is reached in order to decrease the number of elements of the model.
Results and discussion
1. Interaction between concrete face and rockfill body
The results show that the increase of friction coefficient between concrete face and rockfill part from 0.5 to 0.7 has not affect the displacement of dam crown along the earthquake direction. However, when the concrete face is fixed to the rockfill part, significant changes are induced in dam crown displacement time history. In all cases, the deflection due to the dam weight is increased when the concrete face is attached to the rockfill body. The reason can be attributed to the tied interaction between these layers which results in similar deflection of concrete face with rockfill body and higher deflection of concrete dam crown. However, after the application of earthquake load, the displacement of the dam crown decreased in both analyses when tie interaction is defined between concrete face and rockfill body. In this study, due to the very high volume of analysis and its timeliness, it was not possible to examine the dam behavior in the free vibration regime, and therefore, it is not possible to assume the last displacement values at the end of analyses as the permanent displacement of dam. Figure 1 shows the relative displacement of the dam for the two selected earthquakes with a friction coefficient equal to 0.5 between the concrete face and the gravel body. According to Figure 1, the maximum displacement induced by the earthquake is related to Tabas and then, San Francisco earthquake. Furthermore, the high energy content of the Tabas record has been more effective in inducing greater displacement than the other record.
Figure 1. Lateral displacement of dam crown relative to the dam base for the selected earthquakes; Tabas and San Fernando.
The results also indicate that when the friction coefficient between concrete face and rockfill body is 0.5, the lowest damage occurs in the dam compared to that happens when friction coefficient is 0.7 or when the surfaces are tied. When the tied surfaces are used, the most damages takes place in concrete face, since all rockfill body displacement transmits to concrete face which results in much more concrete damages compared to the other interaction cases.
2. Effect of water level in reservoir on dam behavior
In this section, the effect of water level on seismic behavior of dam is investigated. For this purpose, the dam reservoir is analyzed in three cases including empty, half full and full (90% of dam height). Each study cases are examined under San Fernando and Tabas earthquakes. Figure 2 shows the relative displacement of dam crown in the three water level case for San Fernando and Tabas earthquakes.
Figure 2. Relative displacement of dam crown in three water level cases of empty, half and full for (a) Tabas and (b) San Fernando earthquakes
According to Figure 2, for both earthquakes, the dam crown displacement along the earthquake direction is significantly increased by increasing the water level, so that the maximum displacement in full case is 50% higher than empty case.
In this study, using the finite element method and simulation by Abaqus, the seismic behavior of concrete face rockfill dams has been investigated. For this purpose, the verification is firstly carried out using previous research results in literature. In the next step, nonlinear dynamical analysis is carried out, taking into account large displacements for the models under the earthquake record acceleration. The results illustrate that increasing the friction coefficient between the concrete face and the rockfill body from 0.5 to 0.7 has no significant effect on the displacement of the dam crown under earthquake load. Moreover, by using tie interaction between the concrete layer and the rockfill body, there is a substantial difference in the history of the relative displacement of the dam, and the displacement of the dam due to its weight has been increased. Furthermore, the results of this study exhibit that, with increasing the water level in dam reservoir, the deformation of the crown of the dam along the earthquake application direction has had a relatively significant increase, such that in the full state, the maximum displacement is increased by about 50% compared to that of the empty case. This is while the most damage of concrete is observed in the case when half height of dam in filled by water. Due to the more destructive power of near-field earthquakes and their impact nature, only near-fault earthquakes have been used in this research. Therefore, the results of this study are valid only for the behavior of dam under near-field earthquakes.
Ali M. Rajabi, Shima Bakhshi Ardakani,
Volume 14, Issue 4 (1-2021)

Improving the geotechnical characteristics of soils including superficial or deep soils has always been a challenge to geotechnical engineers. Therefore, various physical and chemical methods are used to improve different types of soils. In general, any physical, chemical, biological or combination of methods are used to change the characteristics of natural soil mass in order to achieve engineering goals which is defined in the "soil stabilization." Among different types of additives for soil stabilization, the use of pozzolans has been investigated by researchers because of their chemical compatibility with the environment and the cementation products due to chemical reactions. Todays, a lot of researches has been done on the use of natural or artificial zeolites as pozzolanic materials for the production of cement mixtures. This material, as a pozzolan, increases the speed of the pozzolanic reactions and reduces the density of cement products. However, many studies have been done to investigate the effect of zeolite and sepiolite on the resistance of cement products such as concrete, but so far, the use of these additives has been less considered for soil improvement. On the other hand, because of the compatibility of zeolite and sepiolite with the environment and their unique physiochemical properties, it is necessary to pay attention to these additives in order to improve the soil. Therefore, in this research, the effect of zeolite and sepillot additives with different percentages at different treatment times have been investigated to determine the elasticity modulus and hydraulic conductivity with focus on soil microstructure behavior.
Materials and methods
1. The properties of the soils
In this research, two types of soil including clayey sand (with 20% clay) and sandy clay (with 51% of clay) were used. The studied soils were a mixture of clay and sand of Firoozkouh (a typical type of sand located in north of Iran). Some physiochemical properties of zeolite and sepiolite are presented in Table 1.
Table 1. Physiochemical properties of zeolite and sepiolite used in this study
L.O.I. Na2O K2O MgO CaO Fe2O3 Al2O3 SiO2   Chemical component
25.11 0.02 0.01 15.73 0.01 o.61 0.3 55.3   Sepiolite (%)S
11.94 0.13 - 0.87 2.45 1.26 13.54 69.74   Zeolite (%)
2. Experiments
The uniaxial compressive strength tests were performed at 0.1 mm/min according to ASTM D2166 standard. The stabilized soil samples were compacted at percentages of 0, 5, 10, 15, 20 and 25 in cylindrical molds (38mm × 76mm) in five layers to achieve the desired density. In order to investigate the effect of curing time, the samples were placed inside sealed containers and underwent the test at instantaneous, 7, 14, and 28 days and at the desired additive percentages. To investigate the effect of additives on the soil hydraulic conductivity, clayey sand soil with additives 5, 10, 15, 20, and 25% was prepared using dry mixing method. Then, the prepared mixture was poured from a specific height into the permeability mold with a height of 8.65 cm and diameter of 5 cm. In this way, the specific dry unit weight of all samples was obtained as 1.47 g/cm3, close to the minimum specific dry unit weight. In this research, concerning the considerable effect of fine-grained soils on hydraulic conductivity, falling head test was used to determine the permeability coefficient.
In order to the morphology of the clayey sand soil without additives and stabilized with additives 15% was examined through SEM test.
Discussion and results
1. Modulus of elasticity
In this study, after uniaxial tests in different percentages and ages, the stress-strain graphs were plotted and then the elasticity modulus was calculated. The results showed that, with increasing zeolite content, the modulus of elasticity has been increased and, with increasing curing time, except for a slight decrease, after 7 days, the modulus of elasticity increased. During the initial treatment (7 days), the hardness of the sandy clay soil decreased and then increased with increasing time. In general, hardness in both soils in the high percentages of zeolite is significantly is increased.
Also, the effect of sepiolite on the modulus of elasticity has been studied. The results indicate that with the increase in the percentage of additive and lengthening the curing time, the modulus of elasticity is increased. This increase in the stabilization of both sandy clay and clayey sand soil is almost the same. In addition, in the case of sepiolite modification, the elasticity of sandy clay and clayey sand is approximately equal to 5 times in comparison to the initial value of unstabilized soil. However, in zeolite, the modulus of elasticity in clayey sand soils is almost 2 times, and sandy clay is nearly 5 times higher.
2. Permeability
To investigate the effect of additives on the soil hydraulic conductivity, clayey sand soil with additives 5, 10, 15, 20, and 25% was prepared using dry mixing method. The samples were saturated in a short period and permeability test was carried out immediately. Permeability coefficient changes were mostly influenced by physical factors. Therefore, due to the fineness of both types of additives, the hydraulic conductivity decreases with increasing additive content. The amount of reduced hydraulic conductivity in sepiolite stabilization is greater than zeolite due to the structure of the sepiolite (fiber-shaped) compared to zeolite.
3. SEM imaging
In this study, attempts were made to examine the reasons behind the obtained results more carefully through SEM imaging.

c                                     b                              a
Figure 1. SEM image of non-stabilized clayey sand soil (a) soil stabilized with zeolite 15% (b) soil stabilized with sepiolite 15% (c) during the curing time of 28 days at magnifications 10000X
Figure 1a displays the SEM image of non-stabilized clayey sand soil. As can be seen in the figure, the soil structure is clear as layered and clay scales can be seen as laminated. Figure 1b demonstrates the SEM images of clayey sand soil stabilized with zeolite 15% during the curing time of 28 days. The sample has lost its layered structure in response to stabilization with zeolite during the curing time and changed into an integrated structure. This can be due to incidence of chemical reactions such as ion exchange and pozzolanic reactions in response to adding zeolite. Figure 1c demonstrates the SEM images of clayey sand soil stabilized with sepiolite 15% during the curing time of 28 days. As shown in the figure, the sepiolite has a fibrous-shaped structure that is longitudinally twisted. Also, with  curing time increase, complex structures have emerged that could be due to the occurrence of chemical reactions.
This study examined the effect of zeolite and sepiolite additives on strength parameter of clayey soils. Accordingly, uniaxial compressive strength test was performed on clayey sand and sandy clay soil at percentages of 0, 5, 10, 15, 20 and 25% of zeolite and sepiolite with instantaneous curing times of 7, 14 and 28 days. Further, permeability test was conducted at different percentages on stabilized clayey sand soil. Also, to investigate the effect of these materials on soil microstructure, SEM imaging was performed at 28 days. The results show that both additives increase the elastic modulus of clayey sand and sandy clay soils. Also, the results indicate a steady increase in the stiffness of the cured soil with sepiolite during processing time. However, reducing soil hardness can be seen in stabilizing with zeolite at lower rates and lower percentages. In permeability test, hydraulic conductivity decreases with increasing additive content. The rate of permeability reduction in sepiolite is higher than zeolite. SEM images show that chemical reactions create an integrated structure that ultimately increases uniaxial compressive strength and modulus of elasticity. Also, SEM imaging depicts physical changes along chemical reaction in soil stabilized with sepiolite. Ultimately, increasing soil strength resulting from additive alongside environmentally friendliness is recommended in superficial and deep improvement of soil../files/site1/files/144/Rajabi.pdf

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