Design charts for the stability analysis of unsaturated soil slopes

Kenneth Gavin*, Jianfeng Xue

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

16 Citations (Scopus)


Simple limit equilibrium analyses can be performed to determine the Factor of Safety (FOS) against slope failure of unsaturated soil slopes. However, many of the input parameters needed for these analyses are highly variable, and the FOS value obtained is critically dependent on assumptions made by the designer. This paper describes a suite of reliability analyses on unsaturated soil slopes performed using an invariant reliability model. The results are presented in design charts from which a designer can choose the FOS value required to ensure a given target reliability index for a slope. The approach ensures that despite the variability of input parameters the slope will have a probability of failure of 2.23% or less.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)79-90
Number of pages12
JournalGeotechnical and Geological Engineering: an international journal
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Design charts
  • Reliability analyses
  • Slope stability


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