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Mohr Coulomb

Shear strength of soil or rock is commonly modeled using the Mohr-Coulomb criterion, which is a linear failure criterion requiring two parameters - cohesion and friction angle.

Shear Strength of Soil or Rock Equation


s = shear strength

c’ = effective cohesion

Total Normal Stress Symbol = total normal stress

u = pore pressure

Effective Angle of Internal Friction Symbol= effective angle of internal friction (phi)

The Mohr-Coulomb equation can be used for either total or effective stress conditions. For a total stress analysis, cohesion and friction angle are defined for total stress conditions. Pore water pressure is not considered, and the Mohr-Coulomb equation is simply:

Mohr-Coulomb Equation

Tensile Strength

See the Tensile Strength topic.

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