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Encyclopedia > Atterberg limits

The Liquid Limit, also known as the upper plastic limit, and the Atterberg limit, is the water content at which a soil changes from the liquid state to a plastic state. Water (from the Old English word wæter; c. ... Soil is unconsolidated rock particles mixed with organic matter from plant decay. ... A liquid will assume the shape of its container. ... In physics and materials science, plasticity is a property of a material to undergo a non-reversible change of shape in response to an applied force. ...

The change from a plastic state to a liquid state is gradual, and so any definition of a boundary limit must be somewhat arbitrary. Therefore a standard empirical definition is used. The liquid limit is the water content at which a pat of soil, cut by a standard-sized groove, will flow together for a distance of 12 mm under the impact of 25 blows in a standard liquid-limit apparatus.

It is of practical importance in areas, such as The Netherlands with soft and wet soils and Hong Kong, subject to landslides. In Hong Kong liquid limit tests are performed on a regular basis to check that hills will remain stable during the rainy season. The Netherlands (Dutch: Nederland) is the European part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands (Dutch: Koninkrijk der Nederlanden). ...

The liquid limit and plastic limit are used together for soil identification and classification. The Plastic Limit, also known as the lower plastic limit, is the water content at which a soil changes from the plastic state to a semisolid state. ...

See also

Thixotropy Thixotropy is the property of some non-newtonian pseudoplastic fluids to show a time-dependent change in viscosity; the longer the fluid undergoes shear, the lower its viscosity. ...

External links

Undergraduate worksheet from University of Maine Civil Engineering Department - Soil Mechanics Laborary



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