Thixotropy: The Case of Mexico City Soils

by J. Abraham Diaz-Rodriguez And J. Carlos Santamarina
Year: 1999


Diaz-Rodriguez, J. A. and Santamarina, J. C. (1999). "Thixotropy: The Case of Mexico City Soils." XI Panamerican Conference on Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering, Vol. 1, pp. 441-448.


​Thixotropy implies non-equilibrium initial conditions after remolding. At the macroscale, thixotropy manifests as the regain in mechanical properties. At the microscale, thixotropy involves phenomena such as contact creep and interparticle force redistribution, homogenization of pore pressure (in saturated and partially saturated soils), altered ionic distribution and mobility, and the effects of the loose finer fraction. Low-energy thermal or mechanical agitation helps overcome energy barriers at the microscale, favoring the evolution of thixotropic phenomena. Mexico City soils exhibit significant thixotropic effects; the regain in mechanical parameters is accompanied by changes in electrical properties.


aging clays restoration structuration microscale