The study of sand structure using image analysis is an emerging area in soil mechanics research. Quantification of parameters such as the local void ratio distribution or the orientation of sand known to directly affect the behavior of sand masses is possible. However, accurate quantitative measurement requires high-quality specimen coupon surfaces for imaging. A comprehensive procedure for preserving sand specimens with epoxy resin and preparing specimen coupon surfaces for image analysis using a variety of grinding and polishing procedures is presented. Factors affecting the accuracy of subsequent image analysis measurements are discussed. Example images obtained using the proposed procedures are presented to demonstrate their effectiveness and potential.
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