Stability of slopes in red conemaugh shale of Ohio

Tien H. Wu, Richard L. Williams, John E. Lynch, Pinnaduwa H.S.W. Kulatilake

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Nine slopes excavated in soft Conemaugh shales containing slickensides were investigated. The trace lengths and orientations of the slickensides found in exposures were measured. The shear strengths of the intact shales and slickensides were measured by means of direct shear tests. Stability analyses were performed to calculate the shear strength of the shale in the failed slopes. For the stable slopes, the strength required to attain a safety factor of 1 was calculated. The in situ strength must exceed this strength. The estimated strengths are examined in the light of the average density and the average length of slickenside traces and the stress distribution. Estimates are made of the effect of slickensides and stress distribution on the reduction of shear strength below its peak value.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)248-264
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of geotechnical engineering
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1987

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Science(all)
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)


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