Effect of particle shape of glass beads on the strength and deformation of cemented sands

  • Yang XiaoEmail author
  • Zhengxin Yuan
  • Jia Lin
  • Jinyu Ran
  • Beibing Dai
  • Jian Chu
  • Hanlong Liu
Short Communication


Few studies have focused on the influence of particle shape on the mechanical properties of cemented sand. To address this lack of information, this study investigated the influence of the cement content and particle shape on the strength and deformation of cemented sand based on a series of unconfined compression tests of mixed specimens. Cemented specimens were prepared with cement contents ranging from 4 to 8% and different mixing ratios of angular glass beads (AGBs) and rounded glass beads (RGBs). A shape parameter (overall regularity \( O_{\text{R}} \)) was proposed to quantitatively evaluate the shape of the particles. Mixed specimens were examined using scanning electron microscopy (SEM) analysis to illustrate the properties of the bonds with different mixing ratios of AGBs and RGBs. The test results indicated that the strength and stiffness increased as the cement content increased and the \( O_{\text{R}} \) decreased. The trend of particle shape on the strength and stiffness was found to be independent of the cement content. The SEM images showed that the effective cementation area between angular particles is larger than that between rounded particles and that between angular and rounded particles, which resulted in increased strength and stiffness of the cemented sand.


Cemented sands Overall regularity Particle shape Stiffness Unconfined compressive strength 

List of symbols

\( D_{\hbox{min} }^{\text{F}} \) and \( D_{\hbox{max} }^{\text{F}} \)

Feret minimum and maximum diameters, respectively (Unit: mm)

\( P_{\text{eq}} \) and \( P_{\text{r}} \)

Perimeters of the equivalent circle and the particle, respectively (Unit: mm)

RGBs and AGBs

Rounded glass beads and angular glass beads, respectively


Unconfined compression tests

\( G_{\text{s}} \)

Specific gravity

\( C_{\text{X}} \)


\( A_{\text{R}} \)

Aspect ratio

\( S_{\text{C}} \)


\( O_{\text{R}} \)

Overall regularity

\( \sigma_{\text{u}} \)

Unconfined compressive strength (Unit: MPa)

\( \varepsilon_{\text{f}} \)

Strain at failure

\( E_{50} \)

Secant modulus (Unit: MPa)

\( \varepsilon_{1/2} \)

Strain corresponding to half of \( \sigma_{\text{u}} \)



The authors would like to acknowledge the financial support from the 111 Project (Grant No. B13024), the National Science Foundation of China (Grant No. 51509024, Grant No. 51678094 and Grant No.51578096), the Fundamental Research Funds for the Central Universities (Grant No. 106112017CDJQJ208848) and the Special Financial Grant from the China Postdoctoral Science Foundation (Grant No. 2017T100681).


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Yang Xiao
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
    Email author
  • Zhengxin Yuan
    • 1
  • Jia Lin
    • 4
  • Jinyu Ran
    • 1
  • Beibing Dai
    • 5
  • Jian Chu
    • 6
  • Hanlong Liu
    • 1
  1. 1.School of Civil EngineeringChongqing UniversityChongqingChina
  2. 2.State Key Laboratory of Coal Mine Disaster Dynamics and ControlChongqing UniversityChongqingChina
  3. 3.Key Laboratory of New Technology for Construction of Cities in Mountain AreaChongqing UniversityChongqingChina
  4. 4.Institute of Geotechnical EngineeringUniversity of Natural Resources and Life SciencesViennaAustria
  5. 5.Research Institute of Geotechnical Engineering and Information Technology, School of EngineeringSun Yat-sen UniversityGuangzhouChina
  6. 6.School of Civil and Environmental EngineeringNanyang Technological UniversitySingaporeSingapore

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