This Is AuburnElectronic Theses and Dissertations

Effects of Polyacrylamide Hydrogel on the Properties of Sand




Graham, David

Type of Degree



Civil Engineering


A study on the effects of polyacrylamide hydrogel on the properties of Ottawa sand was conducted. Laboratory testing included stress-controlled cyclic triaxial tests, consolidated undrained triaxial compression tests, and one-dimensional consolidation tests. Experiments evaluating the effectiveness of electrical self-potential and capacitance measurement to detect polyacrylamide hydrogel in sand were conducted. A set of experiments to evaluate the shrinkage potential of polyacrylamide hydrogel treated sand due to dewatering were performed. Procedures for preparing frozen soil samples in the laboratory using both a freezer and liquid nitrogen are described. A new method of sample saturation using a syringe and hypodermic needle is also presented. Treating sand with polyacrylamide hydrogel is a potential new method of soil liquefaction hazard mitigation, pore water modification. This study focuses on the effects of polyacrylamide hydrogel on the properties of Ottawa sand. Polyacrylamide Hydrogel was found to cause a slight increase in the magnitude of consolidation of Ottawa sand, reduce the shear strength of Ottawa sand, reduce dilation during shear, and increase the post liquefaction strength of Ottawa sand. Electrical self-potential and capacitance measurement successfully detected hydrogel in Ottawa sand in the laboratory. The shrinkage experiments indicate that volume change due to changes in water content may be of concern and require further investigation.