Soil–projectile interaction during penetration of a transparent clay simulant

Abdelaziz Ads, Magued Iskander, Stephan Bless

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Visualization of soil structure interaction during projectile penetration of clay is made possible by use of a surrogate composed of magnesium lithium phyllosilicate combined with high-speed photography and digital image correlation. A free-falling penetrator striking at 5.5 m/s simulated a projectile. Penetration resistance was constant within the resolution of the experiment; it was mainly due to the bearing resistance of the soil in contact with the nose, rather than skin friction. Bearing resistance in dynamic penetration for a hemispherical-nose rod was about 20% higher than quasi-static tests using a sphere. Bearing resistance was also about 20% higher for a hemispherical nose compared to a conical nose. Cavitation behind the nose is dependent on its shape with soils rebounding toward the projectile for conical noses but not hemispherical ones.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)815-826
Number of pages12
JournalActa Geotechnica
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 1 2020


  • Cohesion
  • Cohesive
  • Index matching
  • PIV
  • Piling
  • Torpedo
  • Transparent soil
  • Visualization

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geotechnical Engineering and Engineering Geology
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences (miscellaneous)


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