Project summary


Hypoplastic model for unsaturated expansive clays has recently been implemented into an inhouse finite element code SIFEL developed at Czech Technical University. It has been used successfully in simulating behaviour of bentonite buffer in planned nuclear waste repositories.

Recently a European framework funded project BEACON has been setup to investigate the process of homogenization of bentonite blocks and pellets to guarantee adequate sealing properties of the buffer. In the proposed project it is planned to both investigate the behaviour of the buffer in laboratory experiments and to numerically model its behaviour.

Laboratory testing will be performed on newly acquired THM unsaturated oedometric apparatus, enabling to perform tests up to 150 °C. Numerical modelling will be done using SIFEL finite element code with hypoplastic constitutive model. The PhD project will thus stimulate both laboratory and numerical skills of the applicant, while he will have a freedom to decide specific orientation of the project depending on his/her interests.

Five relevant publications of the research group

Mašín, D. (2017). Coupled thermohydromechanical double structure model for expansive soils. ASCE Journal of Engineering Mechanics 143, No. 9.

Ma, Q. J., Ng, C. W. W., Mašín, D. and Zhou, C. (2017). An approach for modelling volume change of fine-grained soil subjected to thermal cycles. Canadian Geotechnical Journal 54, No. 6, 896-901.

Mašín, D. and Khalili, N. (2016). Swelling phenomena and effective stress in compacted expansive clays. Canadian Geotechnical Journal 53, No. 1, 134-147.

Bruthans, J., Soukup, J., Vaculikova, J., Filippi, M., Schweigstillova, J., Mayo, A., Masin, D., Kletetschka, G. and Rihosek, J. (2014). Sandstone landforms shaped by negative feedback between stress and erosion. Nature Geoscience 7, No. 8, 597-601.

Wong, K. S. and Mašín, D. (2014). Coupled hydro-mechanical model for partially saturated soils predicting small strain stiffness. Computers and Geotechnics 61, 355-369.

Current research grants of the group

H2020 project BEACON „Bentonite Mechanical Evolution“, funded by Euratom research and training programme 2014-2018 under GAP No 745 942.

Source of financial support of the project
(min. 5000 CZK per month)

H2020 project BEACON, TAČR TK01030031

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