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Thermo-mechanical behavior of soil-structure interface under monotonic and cyclic loads in the context of energy geostructures

Abstract : Incorporation of heat exchangers in conventional geostructures like piles can extract the heat from the soil for heating purposes and inject it to the soil for cooling purposes. In recent years, research has been conducted at full and laboratory scale to investigate the effect of temperature on the geotechnical behavior of these energy geostructures as well as on the surrounding soil. Indeed, these energy geostructures can be subjected to cyclic mechanical loads and thermal variations throughout their lifetime. The aim of this study was to deepen the understanding regarding the behavior of sand/clay-structure contact under complex thermo-mechanical loads. A temperature-controlled direct shear device to perform monotonic and cyclic constant normal load or constant normal stiffness tests was developed. The response of the interface to the thermal effects on the mechanical behaviour of soils and soil-structure interface was investigated. Fontainebleau sand and kaolin clay were used as proxies for sandy and clayey soils. The results showed that the applied thermal variations have a negligible effect on the shear strength of the sand and sand-structure interface. In clay samples the temperature increase, increased the cohesion and consequently the shear strength, due to thermal contraction during heating. The adhesion of the clay-structure interface, was less than the cohesion of the clay samples. To investigate the mechanical cyclic load effects on the clay-structure interface at different temperatures, monotonic and cyclic constant-volume equivalent-undrained direct shear tests were performed on clay-clay and clay-structure interface at different temperatures. The results showed that, the number of cycles to failure for the clay-structure interface test was lower than that for the clay-clay case in the same range of cyclic and average shear stress ratios. Increasing the temperature, decreased the rate of strain accumulation and the number of cycles to failure increased by 2-3 times. The rate of degradation (degradation parameter, t) decreased by 16% with heating from 22 to 60oC for the different cyclic stress ratios tested. A non-isothermal soil-structure interface model based on critical state theory was then developed. The non-isothermal model takes into account the effect of temperature on the void ratio of interface prior to shearing. The model is capable to capture the effect of temperature on soil-structure interface under constant normal load and constant normal stiffness conditions for both sandy and clayey interfaces. The additional parameters have physical meanings and can be determined from classical laboratory tests. The formulation is in good agreement with the experimental results and the main trends are properly reproduced.
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Soheib Maghsoodi. Thermo-mechanical behavior of soil-structure interface under monotonic and cyclic loads in the context of energy geostructures. Engineering Sciences [physics]. Université de Lorraine, 2020. English. ⟨NNT : 2020LORR0031⟩. ⟨tel-02939328⟩

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