Determine The Maximum Dry Density And The Optimum Moisture Content Of Soil

This test is done to determine the maximum dry density and the optimum moisture content of soil using heavy compaction as per IS: 2720 (Part 8 ) – 1983.The apparatus used is

i) Cylindrical metal mould – it should be either of 100mm dia. and 1000cc volume or 150mm dia. and 2250cc volume and should conform to IS: 10074 – 1982.
ii) Balances – one of 10kg capacity, sensitive to 1g and the other of 200g capacity, sensitive to 0.01g
iii) Oven – thermostatically controlled with an interior of noncorroding material to maintain temperature between 105 and 110oC
iv) Steel straightedge – 30cm long
v) IS Sieves of sizes – 4.75mm, 19mm and 37.5mm


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Relative Density Of Water

The relative density of water is shown in the table below.Also refer to the relative density of soil for more inforamtion on civil engineering tests.

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Determine The Specific Gravity Of Soil

This test is done to determine the specific gravity of fine-grained soil by density bottle method as per IS: 2720 (Part III/Sec 1) – 1980. Specific gravity is the ratio of the weight in air of a given volume
of a material at a standard temperature to the weight in air of an equal volume of distilled water at the same stated temperature.
The apparatus used:
i) Two density bottles of approximately 50ml capacity along with stoppers
ii) Constant temperature water bath (27.0 + 0.2oC)
iii) Vacuum desiccator
iv) Oven, capable of maintaining a temperature of 105 to 110oC
v) Weighing balance, with an accuracy of 0.001g
vi) Spatula

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Determine Free Swell Index Of Soil

To determine the free swell index of soil as per IS: 2720 (Part XL) – 1977. Free swell or differential free swell, also termed as free swell index, is the increase in volume of soil without any external constraint when subjected to submergence in water. The apparatus used :

i) IS Sieve of size 425µm

ii) Oven

iii) Balance, with an accuracy of 0.01g

iv) Graduated glass cylinder- 2 nos., each of 100ml capacity

strong>Procedure to determine Free Swell Index Of Soil
i) Take two specimens of 10g each of pulverised soil passing through 425µm IS Sieve and oven-dry.

ii) Pour each soil specimen into a graduated glass cylinder of 100ml capacity.

iii) Pour distilled water in one and kerosene oil in the other cylinder upto 100ml mark.

iv) Remove entrapped air by gently shaking or stirring with a glass rod.

v) Allow the suspension to attain the state of equilibrium (for not less than 24hours).

vi) Final volume of soil in each of the cylinder should be read out.

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Determine The Plastic Limit Of Soil

This test is done to determine the plastic limit of soil as per IS: 2720 (Part 5) – 1985.The plastic limit of fine-grained soil is the water content of the soil below which it ceases to be plastic. It begins to crumble when rolled into threads of 3mm dia. The apparatus used:

i) Porcelain evaporating dish about 120mm dia.
ii) Spatula
iii) Container to determine moisture content
iv) Balance, with an accuracy of 0.01g
v) Oven
vi) Ground glass plate – 20cm x 15cm
vii) Rod – 3mm dia. and about 10cm long

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