Using a sequential procedure of cyclic and postcyclic direct simple shear tests, the stiffness degradation characteristics of nonplastic silt are studied during and immediately after cyclic loading by direct simple shear (DSS) tests. The results from cyclic and postcyclic DSS tests were interpreted using methods modified from those adopted for cyclic and postcyclic triaxial tests. In particular, the effect of initial static shear stress (ISSS) on postcyclic behavior is considered for nonplastic silt. The findings obtained from the sequential DSS testing on nonplastic silt are: (i) during cyclic loading the tendency of the stiffness to decrease with increasing normalized pore pressure is different for plastic and nonplastic silts, (ii) since the relation between equivalent stiffness ratio and single amplitude shear strain for nonplastic silt does not filt the Hardin-Drnevich Model, new modified relation is needed, (iii) the larger the ISSS is, the faster the decrease in stiffness ratio becomes, and (iv) the decrease of stiffness ratio for nonplatic silt is less marked than that for plastic silt when plotted against the normalized pore pressure after cyclic load.
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