Geomechanics Research Group

Geomechanics covers activities related to the characterisation of granular materials, soil, clays etc and understanding, and modelling, their behaviour under a range of conditions and time scales.

Particular areas of interest are the modelling of soil-structure interactions including soil-vehicle interactions for extra-terrestrial applications and the behaviour of liquefiable soils subject to seismic and other dynamic effects.

Our research areas

  • Mechanics and micro-mechanics of granular materials including image analysis
  • Discrete Element Modelling (DEM) of granular materials including laboratory validation
  • Physical modelling of geotechnical problems including soil-structure interaction with particular emphasis to off-shore wind turbines
  • Soil-Vehicle interactions including extra-terrestrial applications
  • Wave propagation in, and constitutive models for, nonlinear materials
  • Pipelines and piles in seismic areas including liquefiable soils
  • Study of soil liquefaction using element tests.

Research projects

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Study with us

Pursue a career in the geotechnical engineering sector with our masters course.

Surrey Advanced Geotechnical Engineering (SAGE) Laboratory

The SAGE Lab (PDF) is a geotechnical testing facility to carry out advanced laboratory testing of soils and scaled model tests of geotechnical problems.

Calibration chambers

We have two calibration chambers with transparent sides for visualisation purposes:

  • A large calibration chamber 2.4m × 1.4m × 2.6m in size with a transparent front. This chamber has been used before to carry out shaking table tests.
  • A small calibration chamber 450mm × 200mm × 400mm in size with a transparent front. This has been used before to carry out 1-g and shaking table tests.

Our capabilities

We are fully capable of carrying out all types of soil testing including Triaxial testing with local strain measurements (bender element), cyclic triaxial, resonant column and dynamic simple shear.

Example problem studies are:

  • Behaviour of offshore wind turbines under cyclic and dynamic loading
  • Behaviour of pipelines crossing a fault
  • Other Dynamic Soil-Structure Interaction (DSSI) problems.

We also can carry out vibration monitoring of small scale models using non-contact devices, shaking table tests for small scale models and also can develop of customised sensors (e.g. waterproof MEMS accelerometers).

Our team

Please contact the head of our group if you are interested in using our SAGE laboratory for any advanced soil or small scale testing, or if you have any questions.

Benyi Cao profile image

Dr Benyi Cao

Royal Academy of Engineering Research Fellow; Lecturer in Civil and Environmental Engineering

Liang Cui profile image

Dr Liang Cui

Associate Professor

Rao Martand Singh profile image

Dr Rao Singh

Lecturer of Geotechnical Engineering

Rick Woods profile image

Dr Rick Woods

Associate Professor, Geotechnical Engineering

Postgraduate research students

Dr Hadi Abba

Metakaolin-based geopolymer for ground improvement of tropical expansive black cotton soil

Sadra Amani profile image

Dr Sadra Amani

Seismic design and analysis of offshore wind turbines

Oswaldo Alejandro Pellejer profile image

Oswaldo Alejandro Pellejer

Carbon fibre reinforced polymer hydrofoil and its digital twin