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What do we mean by “Basic Properties”, “Index Properties” & “Engineering properties” in Geotechnical Engineering?

Basic Properties:

are the fundamental characteristics of the materials and provide a basis for identification and correlations. Some are used in engineering calculations.

Examples of Basic Properties include Specific gravity , Porosity , Void ratio, Moisture content , Density (Natural ,Maximum , Minimum , Relative) , Optimum moisture density , Hardness , Durability , Reactivity , Sonic-wave characteristics

Index Properties:

Index properties define certain physical characteristics used basically for classifications, and also for correlations with engineering properties.

These include Grain-size distribution, Liquid limit, Plastic limit, Plasticity index, Shrinkage limit, Organic content, Uniaxial compression, Point-load index

Engineering properties:

Engineering properties mainly deal with material’s response to tension, compression, shear, and repeated combined actions of these three. These include Mechanical Properties as well as Hydraulic Properties.

The examples are: Permeability , Deformation moduli: static or dynamic , Consolidation , Expansion , Extension strain , Strength Unconfined / Confined/Static / Dynamic ), California bearing ratio (CBR) etc.