Most of the studies dealing with cracking characteristics of the fine-grained soils focus on establishing the influence of various factors affecting cracking, after effects of cracking, and cracking patterns. Mathematical models have also been developed based on the experimental results, from these studies, to estimate time of initiation of the crack, water content at this instant, and the depth up to which these cracks propagate. However, validation of these parameters based on the real life measurements has not yet been demonstrated. In this situation, resorting to laser microscopy to capture cracking characteristics, particularly the depth of crack propagation of fine-grained soils, appears to be quite useful. This technical note deals with details of the application of a laser microscope which has been employed to study cracking characteristics of the fine-grained soils. This study has been found to be quite useful in correlating dimensions of the crack with each other and its volume.
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