Classification of soil – USDA, AASHTO, Unified classification methods

Classification of soil – USDA, AASHTO, Unified classification methods

What is soil and why it should be classified? Soil is a natural element of the earth and also a mixture of organic, inorganic materials together with gasses and liquids. Soil formation starts from weathering of parental rock and they exist as the first layer on the earth surface. 
In Civil Engineering, the study of soil and its composition is called as Geotechnical Engineering. Anyone can wonder that why this much of importance is given to soil in Civil Engineering? The reason is simple as the soil is the oldest construction element and any construction is built on soil or built with soil. 

Soil should be classified into groups as to know the strength and structure of soil – whether they can resist the load of the construction structure or not and to know the type or ingredient of soil – whether the water content or other composition of soil affect the construction structure in normal condition or during any geo – hazard times. 

Also, the other advantage of soil classification is, Geo technicians and Engineers can easily understand the property of any soil obtained from unknown place from its laboratory test results.

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