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Non-invasive characterization of particle morphology of calcareous sands from São Tomé & Príncipe

Beemer, R., Fonseca, J. ORCID: 0000-0002-7654-6005 & Shaw, J. (2023). Non-invasive characterization of particle morphology of calcareous sands from São Tomé & Príncipe. Paper presented at the IS-PORTO 2023: 8th International Symposium on Deformation Characteristics of Geomaterials, 3-6 Sep 2023, Porto, Portugal.


Calcareous sands of biogenic origin are widely spread throughout the world’s seabed. They are the foundation soils for many offshore geotechnical structures, and, in addition, onshore uses of this material are becoming more significant with the growing demand of backfill material for transport infrastructure. These sands comprise the remains of marine organisms such as shells and tests, and the grains can vary from platy to hollow thin-walled forms with highly angular features. Geotechnical design on calcareous sands is challenging owing to the many uncertainties related to their microscale properties. This study uses non-invasive X-ray micro-computed tomography (μCT) and advanced three-dimensional (3D) image analysis techniques to quantify the morphology of bioclastic calcareous sands from São Tomé & Príncipe. The statistics of particle shape parameters of the São Tomé sand are compared to that of the previously studied Ledge Point sand. In spite of an order of magnitude difference in particle size, São Tomé and Ledge Point sands are markedly similar and, as seen in other calcareous sand, São Tomé shows a strong correlation in 3D sphericity and convexity. The results presented here help to better understand the mechanisms of grain interlocking, and the role of intra-granular void ratio on the mechanical behaviour of calcareous sands from different parts of the world.

Publication Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Publisher Keywords: Calcareous sand; Particle shape; Micro-scale; X-ray tomography
Subjects: Q Science > QE Geology
T Technology > TA Engineering (General). Civil engineering (General)
Departments: School of Science & Technology > Engineering
Related URLs:
[thumbnail of Beemer Fonseca Shaw 2023 accepted.pdf] Text - Accepted Version
This document is not freely accessible due to copyright restrictions.


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