New knowledge about the behaviour of Palaeogene clay – one of the trickiest soil types in Denmark

PhD defence, Wednesday 27 June 2018, Thomas Rye Simonsen.

2018.06.27 | Maia Høyer Monod

Thomas Rye Simonsen

During his studies, Thomas Rye Simonsen has researched one of the trickiest soil types in Denmark – Palaeogene clay of very high plasticity. Clay of very high plasticity is found in the Danish underground and can potentially damage our buildings due to its large deformation potential. Through intensive field monitoring in high plasticity clays during e.g. pile driving at construction sites in Aarhus, Thomas has gained new and important knowledge about pore-water pressures and soil deformation – knowledge that contributes to a greater understanding of the mechanisms behind the clay’s behavior. Amongst other things, the research shows that the in situ properties of the clay can be significantly different from laboratory values. This knowledge could change the way we plan and design geotechnical investigations in the future and have implications on foundation design of structures on high plasticity clays.

The new research supplement our existing knowledge about high plasticity clay with important field data. In the long term, the new data could contribute to improved models for pile foundations in high plasticity clays.

The PhD degree was completed in collaboration with Geo and the Department of Engineering, Aarhus University.

This résumé was prepared by the PhD student.

Time: Wednesday 27 June 2018 at 13.00
Place: Building 3210, room 04.047, Navitas, Aarhus University, Inge Lehmanns Gade 10, 8000 Aarhus C
Title of PhD thesis: Pore water pressure response and heave of Palaeogene clays in connection with deep excavation and pile driving
Contact information: Thomas Rye Simonsen,, tel. +45 8741 2461
Members of the assessment committee:
Director of Research, Development and Innovation James M. Strout, Norwegian Geotechnical Institute, Norway
Professor Assaf-Avraham Klar, Department of Civil Engineering, DTU Civil Engineering, Technical University of Denmark
Associate Professor Steffen Petersen (chair), Department of Engineering, Aarhus University
Main supervisor: Professor (docent) Kenny Kataoka Sørensen, Department of Engineering, Aarhus University
Senior Project Manager Nik Okkels, Geo
Language: The PhD dissertation will be defended in English

The defence is public.

The PhD thesis is available for reading at the Graduate School of Science and Technology/GSST, Ny Munkegade 120, building 1520, rooms 128-134, 8000 Aarhus C.

PhD defence
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Revised 29.06.2018