Landfill liner interface strengths from torsional-ring-shear tests

Timothy D. Stark, Alan R. Poeppel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


A torsional-ring-shear apparatus and test procedure are described for measuring soil/geosynthetic and geosynthetic/geosynthetic interface strengths. Typical interface strengths are presented for a double-composite liner system and the relevancy of ring-shear strengths is illustrated using the slope failure at the Kettleman Hills Waste Repository, Kettleman City, Calif. The results of undrained ring-shear tests show that for a clay/geomembrane interface: (1) Interface strength depends on plasticity and compaction water content of the clay, and the applied normal stress; (2) interface strengths measured with the torsional-ring-shear apparatus are in excellent agreement with back-calculated field strengths; and (3) peak and residual interface failure envelopes are nonlinear, and the nonlinearity should be modeled in stability analyses instead of as a combination of cohesion and friction angle. Design recommendations for interface strengths and stability analyses are also presented.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)597-615
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of Geotechnical Engineering
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1994

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Science(all)
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)


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