Numerical simulation of cyclic shear tests considering the fabric change and principal stress rotation effects

Zhe Wang, Yunming Yang, Yao Li, Shu Liu, Pan Zhou

Research output: Journal PublicationArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


Cyclic loadings could induce complicated soil responses, including the fabric change and principal stress rotation, both of which would reduce the effective confining pressure and accelerate the build-up of excess pore water pressures, thus leading to sand liquefaction in undrained conditions. The principal stress rotation, even without the change of principal stress magnitudes, would further generate the accumulative plastic shear strains. However, most of the existing studies focus on their individual effect and the combined effect was seldom considered. In this paper, a numerical approach including an elastoplastic sand constitutive model is proposed to consider the combined effect of the fabric change and principal stress rotation. In this model, the fabric change is considered with the anisotropic critical state theory and the principal stress rotation is considered by splitting the plastic strain increment into the monotonic part and rotational part. By simulating a series of cyclic shear tests, results from the numerical solutions are found showing good agreements with the existing experimental results and the importance of considering the combined effect is demonstrated. The approach can be used to predict the stress-strain response of sand and guide the design of foundations especially in undrained cyclic loading conditions, for example, earthquake loadings conditions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1409-1432
Number of pages24
JournalInternational Journal for Numerical and Analytical Methods in Geomechanics
Issue number8
Early online date11 Mar 2022
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2022


  • cyclic loading
  • fabric change
  • liquefaction
  • numerical simulation
  • principal stress rotation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computational Mechanics
  • General Materials Science
  • Geotechnical Engineering and Engineering Geology
  • Mechanics of Materials


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