Back close

Course Detail

Course Name Earth Retaining Structures
Course Code 15CVL451
Program B. Tech. in Civil Engineering
Year Taught 2019


Unit 1

Earth dams – types of dams – selection of type of dam based on material availability – foundation conditions and topography. Design details – crest, free board, upstream and downstream slopes, upstream and downstream slope protection – central and inclined cores – types and design of filters. Seepage analysis and control – seepage through dam and foundations – control of seepage in earth dam and foundation. Stability analysis – critical stability conditions – Evaluation of stability by Bishop’s and sliding wedge methods under critical conditions.

Unit 2

Construction techniques – methods of construction – quality control. Instrumentation – measurement of pore pressures. Earth pressure theories – Rankine’s and Coulomb’s earth pressure theories for cohesionless and cohesive backfills – Computation of earth pressures for various cases – inclined – with surcharge – submerged and partly submerged – stratified backfills.

Rigid retaining structures – active and passive earth pressures against gravity retaining walls – Surcharge – Computation of earth pressures by Trial wedge method – a mathematical approach for completely submerged andpartly submerged backfills – Importance of capillarity tension in earth pressure.

Graphical methods of earth pressure computation – Trial wedge method for coulomb’s and Rankine’s conditions, for regular and irregular ground and wall conditions – Rebhan’s construction for active pressure – Friction circle method – Logarithmic spiral method.

Unit 3

Design of gravity retaining wall – Cantilever retaining walls Flexible retaining structure – type and methods of construction – Design strength parameters – safety factor for sheet pile walls – Computation of earth pressures against cantilever sheet piles in cohesionless and cohesive soils –anchored sheet piles – free earth method – fixed earth method – Rowe’s moment reduction method – Stability of sheet piling.Diaphragm walls and coffer dams – type of diaphragm walls and their construction techniques in various soil types – Earth pressure on braced cuts and coffer dams – Design of coffer dams.

Text Books

  1. Winterkorn H. F. and Fand H. Y., “Foundation Engineering handbook”, Galgotia, 2000.
  2. Clayton C. R. I, Militisky, J and Woods, “Earth Pressure and Earth Retaining Structures”, Survey university press, 1993.


  • Das, B. M., “Principles of Foundation Engineering”, CL Engineering, 2013.
  • Das, B. M., “Fundamentals of Geotechnical Engineering”, CL Engineering, 2013.
  • Swami Saran, “Analysis and Design of Foundations and Retaining Structures”, IK International Publishing, 2012.

DISCLAIMER: The appearance of external links on this web site does not constitute endorsement by the School of Biotechnology/Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham or the information, products or services contained therein. For other than authorized activities, the Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham does not exercise any editorial control over the information you may find at these locations. These links are provided consistent with the stated purpose of this web site.

Admissions Apply Now