The Geotechnical Research Group would like to thank the kind generosity of the Alumni Fund 2015 which has funded the purchase of two new triaxial loading frames for the SILTS (Soil Interactions Learning & Teaching Suite).
The new triaxial frames (an example is pictured right) have brought new state-of-the-art equipment into the SILT Suite. This will greatly benefit undergraduate teaching: second year undergraduates will be able to work in small groups during their geotechnics laboratories. Facilitating small group teaching was one of the aims for the SILT Suite (when it was funded by the Alumni Fund in 2010) and the new triaxial apparatuses will ensure this continues into the future as undergraduate numbers increase.
The benefit to the undergraduate students is two-fold. The triaxial apparatuses teaches students about soil variability and data quality, essential for predicting ground behaviour in order to inform design decisions. And the small group teaching creates opportunities for research-led inquiry, further enhancing their learning.
Coincidental improvements will also be seen by undergraduate and postgraduate research projects. The new apparatuses will allow them to establish fundamental soil properties using year-round accessible equipment, widening the potential impact of the Geotechnical Research Group by underpinning and increasing the number of student research projects that can operate within the laboratory.