220.027 Numerical Geotechnics
This course is in all assigned curricula part of the STEOP.
This course is in at least 1 assigned curriculum part of the STEOP.

2023S, VO, 1.5h, 2.5EC, to be held in blocked form


  • Semester hours: 1.5
  • Credits: 2.5
  • Type: VO Lecture
  • Format: Presence

Learning outcomes

After successful completion of the course, students are able to...

  • list practical applications for numerical modelling in soil mechanics,
  • discuss the differences between the Discrete Element Method (DEM), the Boundary Element Method (BEM) and the Finite Element Method (FEM), and to explain the basics of FEM,
  • explain the basics of elastoplasticity,
  • explicate the basics of Crititical State Soil Mechanics,
  • describe important elastoplastic models used in soil mechanics,
  • discuss possibilities for modelling the behaviour of rock mass numerically,
  • explain the importance of considering drained and undrained conditions in soil mechanical modelling with FEM,
  • discuss the determination of the factor of safety of a structure using the shear strength reduction technique.

Subject of course

The basics for numerical modelling of geotechnical tasks are presented. Consequently, frequently used elastoplastic material models will be discussed and the theoretical background of these models will be explained. In addition, possibilities for the modelling of rock and the consolidation process of fine-grained soils with FEM are shown. Furthermore, the strength-reduction-technique for the determination of the factor of safety in slope stability analysis and examples for modelling deep excavations and tunnels with FEM are described.

Teaching methods

Introduction to the basics of numerical modelling in geotechnical engineering. The fundamentals of FEM are discussed, and various elastoplastic constitutive models are presented, and their theoretical background is explained. Furthermore, possibilities for the modelling of rock and the consolidation process of fine-grained soils are presented and practical examples of the modelling of deep excavations and tunnels are analysed. During the lecture students will be asked multiple-choice questions. These questions will be answered anonymously by the students using controllers. The distribution of the chosen options and the correct answer will be discussed after each question.

Mode of examination


Additional information



Course dates

Tue13:00 - 17:0018.04.2023Hörsaal 14 Numerical Geotechnics
Wed08:00 - 12:0019.04.2023Sem.R. DA grün 03 A Numerical Geotechnics
Tue13:00 - 17:0025.04.2023Hörsaal 14 Numerical Geotechnics
Wed08:00 - 12:0026.04.2023Sem.R. DA grün 03 A Numerical Geotechnics
Course is held blocked

Examination modalities

Oral exam

Course registration

Begin End Deregistration end
21.02.2023 12:00 22.03.2023 19:00 22.03.2023 19:00


Study CodeObligationSemesterPrecon.Info
066 505 Civil Engineering Science Mandatory elective


No lecture notes are available.

Previous knowledge

The graduation of the following courses, in the meaning of a soil mechanical education, are listed as a condition, in order to be able to follow the contents conveyed:

221.008 (VO) Ground Engineering and Soil Mechanics

221.009 (UE) Ground Engineering and Soil Mechanics

221.010 (VO) Ground Engineering and Soil Mechanics 2

221.005 (LU) Ground Engineering and Soil Mechanics 2