PGE 383 - Advanced Geomechanics (Unique #19250, #19320)

Instructor: John T. Foster, Ph.D.
Office: PGE 3.108
Phone: 512-471-6972

Class Location: CPE 2.202
Class Time: MWF 11:00 - 12:00 AM
Office Hours: TTH 9:00-11:00 and by appointment

Course Website:

Course Description: Formulation, theory, and computer implementation of inelastic finite elements for pressure sensitive and nearly incompressible materials. The targeted physical settings will be the coupled behaviour of pore fluids and deformation of solid materials and the nonlinear elastic-inelastic behaviour of geomaterials. If time allows, regularization and extended techniques for special treatment of the localization and failure of geomaterials will be discussed.

Prerequisites: None. However, an undergraduate course in solid mechanics and proficiency in a computer programming language is recommended.

Required Text: None

Additional References:

Computational Geomechanics: With Special Reference to Earthquake Engineering. Zienkiewicz, Chan, Pastor, Schrefler, and Shiomi. 1999.

Mechanics and Physics of Porous Solids. Coussy. 2010.

Theory of Porous Media: Highlights in Historical Development and Current State. de Boer. 2011.

Introduction to the Mechanics of a Continuous Medium. Malvern. 1977.

Nonlinear Finite Elements for Continua and Structures. Belytschko, Liu, Moran, and Elkhodary. 2014.

An Introduction to the Finite Element Method. Reddy. 2005.

Plasticity Theory. Lubliner. 2008.

Computational Inelasticity. Simo and Hughes. 2000.

Grading Policy:

  • Midterm Exam: 20%

  • Final Exam: 20%

  • Homeworks and computer projects: 60%


Below is a general outline of what I intend to cover in the course. This is subject to change based on the needs and preparation of the students in the class. Any updates will be posted as they occur.

Week Topic Notes
Aug. 26, 28 Introduction
Aug. 31, Sept. 2, 4 Kinematics & Strain
Sept. 9, 11 Stress
Sept. 14, 16, 18 Governing Equations of Continua
Sept. 21, 23, 25 Infinitesimal Elasticity Constitutive Theory
Sept. 28, 30, Oct. 2 Infinitesimal Plasticity Constitutive Theory
Oct. 5, 7, 9 Poroelasticty Theory
Oct. 12, 14, 16 Midterm Exam, Introduction to FEM
Oct. 19, 21, 23 Strong Form, Weak Form of Governing Equations
Oct. 26, 28, 30 Element Formulations
Nov. 2, 4, 6 Isoparametric Elements and Gauss Integration
Nov. 9, 11, 13 Plane Poroelasticity FE formulation
Nov. 16, 18, 20 Coupled Solution Techniques
Nov. 23, 25 Plasticity Return Algorithms & Consistent Tangent Moduli
Nov. 30, Dec. 2, 4 Mixed Finite Element formulation
Dec. 12 Final Exam

Disability Statement: The University of Texas at Austin provides upon request appropriate academic accommodations for qualified students with disabilities. For more information, contact the Office of the Dean of Students at 512-471-6259 or see for more information.