Course Details

Soil Mechanics

BFA002 course is part of 4 study plans

Bc. full-t. program BPC-SI > spVS compulsory Summer Semester 2nd year 5 credits

Bc. full-t. program BPC-MI compulsory Winter Semester 2nd year 5 credits

Bc. full-t. program BPA-SI compulsory Summer Semester 2nd year 5 credits

Bc. combi. program BKC-SI compulsory Summer Semester 2nd year 5 credits

Soil difference from other building materials - particle nature, multiphase system. Soil formation, clay minerals, residual soils. Soil properties from the perspective of the individual phases. State characteristics of soils. Stress and strain in 2D (Mohr circle, Effective stress, drained ver. undrained conditions). Water in the soil (permeability, seepage in the soil). Compressibility of soil. Consolidation. Shear strength of soils. Stress path. Stress in the soil (Geostatic stress vertical and lateral. Stresses in soil due to surface loads). Practical applications. Settlement of foundation soil (total, consolidation). Bearing capacity of foundation soil. Slope Stability (principles of slope stability analysis, the effect of water on slope stability). Earth pressures (active, at rest and passive).

Course Guarantor

doc. Ing. Lumír Miča, Ph.D.


Institute of Geotechnics

Learning outcomes

Gaining knowledge about the mechanical behavior of soils, their classification and description, the influence of water on the behavior of soil, laboratory testing of soils. Solving basic geotechnical problems using analytical methods (settlement and bearing capacity of the base surface, slope stability, earth pressure).

Completing the course the student will get knowledge about soil behavior under various loading conditions. Will be able to evaluate the deformation and strength characteristics of soils. It will focus on laboratory tests that need to be selected for characterization of soils. Application of soil properties for foundation design surface, slope stability assessment and determination of earth pressures.


Knowledge from Geology (soil formation, types of foundation soils). Fundamentals of Structural mechanics.


Elasticity and Plasticity

Planned educational activities and teaching methods

The presented topic is practiced on credit examples including the parts individually discussed. Part of the exercise takes place in soil mechanics laboratory.
Teaching methods depend on the type of course unit as specified in the article 7 of BUT Rules for Studies and Examinations.

Forms and criteria of assessment

For successful completion of the course must meet the following conditions:
1st. The credit.
1.1 Conditions for obtaining credit - attendance, examples and project submission.
2nd. Passing exams.
2.1 The written exam consists of practical example and theory. The minimum threshold for passing the exam is 60% of the total number of points.


To provide students with basic knowledge about soil properties and soil behaviour for safe and economical design of foundations, design of earth body and for vertical structures design.

Specification of controlled instruction, the form of instruction, and the form of compensation of the absences

Vymezení kontrolované výuky a způsob jejího provádění stanoví každoročně aktualizovaná vyhláška garanta předmětu.


2 hours/week, 12 weeks, elective

Syllabus of lectures

1. Introduction to soil mechanics (basic characteristics of soils; origin, formation, mineralogy, grain size composition).
2. Index and state properties of soils. Classification of soils for engineering purposes.
3. Basic of geomechanics – (Stress and strain in soil; Mohr´s circle; Principle of effective stress, The mechanical behavior of materials - elasticity, plasticity, failure; drainaed, undrained conditions; the effect of time).
4. Importance of water in soil (permeability, steady state seepage).
5. Compressibility of soil (isotropic, One-dimensional, over-consolidation).
6. Consolidation; Creep (theory + laboratory testing); settlement (immediate, consolidation and total).
7. Shear strength of soils (peak, critical, residual).
8. Shear strength of soils continuation.
9. Shear strength of soils - laboratory tests (triaxial tests, shear test).
10. Bearing capacity of soil.
11. Slope stability.
12. Earth pressure. Compaction of soils.


2 hours/week, 12 weeks, compulsory

Syllabus of practice

1. Index properties of soils. Characteristics of phase relationship in the soil.
2. Classification of soils.
3. Effective stress. Stresses in soil due to surface loads.
4. Geostatic stress. Determination of the coefficient of hydraulic conductivity of the soil.
5. Compression and consolidation – determination of relevant parameters.
6. Calculation of settlements.
7. Laboratory – index and state properties.
8. Laboratory – mechanical properties.
9. Determination of triaxial tests.
10. Calculation of bearing capacity of soil.
11. Solution of homogenous slope stability.
12. Calculation of earth pressure. Credits.