Experimental study for application of the punch shear test to estimate adfreezing strength of frozen soil-structure interface

Sangyeong Park, Chaemin Hwang, Hangseok Choi, Youngjin Son, Tae Young Ko

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


The direct shear test is commonly used to evaluate the shear behavior of frozen soil-structure interfaces under normal stress. However, failure criteria, such as the Mohr–Coulomb failure criterion, are needed to obtain the unconfined shear strength. Hence, the punch shear test, which is usually used to estimate the shear strength of rocks without confinement, was examined in this study to directly determine the adfreezing strength. It is measured as the shear strength of the frozen soil-structure interface under unconfined conditions. Different soils of silica sand, field sand, and field clay were prepared inside the steel and concrete ring structures. Soil and ring structures were frozen at the target temperature for more than 24 h. A punch shear test was then conducted. The test results show that the adfreezing strength increased with a decrease in the target temperature and increase in the initial water content, owing to the increase in ice content. The adfreezing strength of field clay was the smallest when compared with the other soil specimens because of the large amount of unfrozen water content. The field sand with the larger normalized roughness showed greater adfreezing strength than the silica sand with a lower normalized roughness. From the experiment and analysis, the applicability of the punch shear test was examined to measure the adfreezing strength of the frozen soil-structure interface. To find a proper sample dimension, supplementary experiments or numerical analysis will be needed in further research.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)281-290
Number of pages10
JournalGeomechanics and Engineering
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2022 May 10

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research was supported by the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) grants funded by the Korea government (2019R1A2C2086647 and 2020R1A6A1A030 45059).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 Techno-Press, Ltd.


  • adfreezing strength
  • frozen soil-structure interface
  • ice content
  • punch shear test
  • unfrozen water content

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Geotechnical Engineering and Engineering Geology


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