Verification of Desaturation Technique as a Liquefaction Countermeasure for Existing Embankments

Yuichi Tomida, Mitsu Okamura


Highways play a key role of providing not only usual but emergency traffic transportation in case of earthquake. In Shikoku area, Japan, a total of 10km of highway embankment is expected to be severely damaged due to liquefaction of thick foundation sand by an earthquake. Application of liquefaction countermeasure techniques to foundation soil below existing embankments was considered, however, the estimated cost was far beyond the budget.

A challenge that geotechnical engineers have been facing is the remedial countermeasure works for enormous length of existing embankments which are susceptible to liquefaction induced damage. In this paper, a newly developed liquefaction countermeasure technique of dramatically low cost, the desaturation method by air injection, is introduced (Okamura et al., 2011). This technic attracts considerable attention in recent years as an innovative technique which can be applicable to soil just beneath existing structures(Fig. 1).  Effects of the technique on seismic performance of embankments are examined through a series of centrifuge tests.


Liquefaction; Centrifuge test; Degree of saturation

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