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Dr Chao Yang

Reseach Academic

School of Engineering

Career Summary


Chao Yang completed his Ph.D study in Geotechnical Engineering from Tongji University, China and École nationale des ponts et chaussées (ENPC), France, in July 2008. His research focused on the mechanical behaviour of unsaturated cemented soils (French loess) subjected to cyclic transportation loading (i.e., high speed railway, road). He has a BEng in Construction Engineering and a MEng in Engineering Mechanics in Henan Polytechnic University, China. Before he came to the University of Newcastle, he worked as an engineer in Shanghai Tunnel Engineering Co., Ltd., mainly responsible for studying and implementing critical construction techniques in shield tunneling beneath both operating and under-construction runways. In the spring of 2009, he worked in ENPC for three months and developed a piece of engineering software aiming to evaluate the TGV (French high speed railway) foundation stability using field penetration tests.

Research Expertise
(1) Constitutive modelling of unsaturated soils (2) Seepage analysis in engineered soil covers (3) Foundation stability analysis using shear-wave velocity method (4) Shield tunnel construction in soft clays (5) Soil nailing technique (6) Numerical simulation and Software development.


  • Doctor of Engineering, Tongji University - China
  • Master of Engineering, Henan Polytechnic University - China


  • Geotechnical Engineering
  • Shield Tunnel Construction
  • Unsaturated Soil Mechanics


  • French (Fluent)

Fields of Research

090501Civil Geotechnical Engineering35
090699Electrical and Electronic Engineering not elsewhere classified20

Professional Experience

UON Appointment

DatesTitleOrganisation / Department
25/11/2014 - 20/11/2015Reseach AcademicUniversity of Newcastle
School of Engineering

Academic appointment

DatesTitleOrganisation / Department
1/02/2009 - 1/04/2009Postdoctoral ResearcherÉcole nationale des ponts et chausses, France

Professional appointment

DatesTitleOrganisation / Department
1/09/2008 - 1/09/2009Civil EngineerShanghai Tunnel Engineering Co Ltd, China
TBM Branch Company


For publications that are currently unpublished or in-press, details are shown in italics.

Journal article (16 outputs)

2015Sun B, Zeng S, Guo S, Yang C, 'Variation Characteristics of Stress Wave Speed for Anchorage System Under Instantaneous Excitation', Geotechnical and Geological Engineering, (2015)

Dynamic nondestructive testing is widely used to evaluate the bolt anchorage quality in an anchorage system. The consolidating wave speed, stress wave speed for anchorage system under instantaneous excitation, is a required parameter for the evaluation. However, it is very difficult to determine the wave speed since it is affected by many factors. In order to solve the problem, this paper tries to establish the relationships between consolidation wave speed and wave speed in anchorage medium. This paper used dynamic nondestructive testing for measuring consolidation wave speed and wave speed in anchorage medium through experiment. The consolidation wave speed is measured by the grouted bolts in concrete fabricated by casting the bolts within one cubic concrete block with the dimensions of (600 mm × 600 mm × 2400 mm) around steel bars, and the wave speed in anchorage medium is measured by concrete specimens. The results indicate that the consolidation wave speed ranges from wave speed in concrete to that in free steel bar, the consolidation wave speed and wave speed in concrete vary in exponential law, and that they are mutually symmetric. This proposes the new idea that wave speed in anchorage medium can be used to calculate consolidation wave speed, and this can make the evaluation of anchorage quality much easier and more accurate because the testing of wave speed in anchorage medium is well developed and reliable and it can be determined by only testing on standard cubic specimens (150 mm × 150 mm × 150 mm).

2015Yang C, Sheng D, Carter JP, Sloan SW, 'Modelling the plastic anisotropy of Lower Cromer Till', Computers and Geotechnics, 69 22-37 (2015)

Experimental data on Lower Cromer Till (LCT), a sandy silty-clay, are re-evaluated enabling a study on the effects of plastic anisotropy of soil fabric. The results of virgin constant stress ratio consolidation tests reveal that an equilibrium state is achieved and maintained under any specific radial loading path, with characteristics of a unique anisotropic fabric and a unique straining mode. The inclination of the plastic dilatancy and the yield surface from the hydrostatic axis provides a means of quantifying this equilibrium state of the soil fabric. A unique fabric anisotropy at critical state is naturally obtained. Rotational hardening laws are then proposed to quantify the changes in plastic anisotropy of soil fabric for all stress ranges. Constitutive relations are formulated within the framework of Critical Sate Soil Mechanics, with a non-associated flow rule logically determined from experiments. The proposed rotational hardening laws have been systematically validated against a large bank of laboratory tests on LCT samples, covering a variety of deposition conditions, stress histories, and overconsolidation ratios. Comparisons illustrate the feasibility and efficiency of the proposed framework in describing the plastic anisotropy of LCT, which may suggest possible application to other types of clays.

Co-authorsDaichao Sheng, John Carter, Scott Sloan
2014Yang C, Carter JP, Sheng D, 'Description of compression behaviour of structured soils and its application', CANADIAN GEOTECHNICAL JOURNAL, 51 921-933 (2014) [C1]
DOI10.1139/cgj-2013-0265Author URL
CitationsScopus - 1
Co-authorsJohn Carter, Daichao Sheng
2013Yang C, Sheng D, Carter JP, 'Stochastic analysis of hydraulic hysteresis in multi-layer unsaturated soil covers under random flux boundary conditions', Geotechnical Special Publication, 542-554 (2013) [C1]

The effect of hydraulic hysteresis inherent in soil water characteristic curves is explored stochastically in seepage analysis of engineered soil covers. A multi-layer soil cover with random top boundary flux conditions is simulated with the First Order Second Moment method. Water inflow and outflow at the top boundary are chosen as two random variables. The capillary barrier mechanism is taken into account, and the breakthrough hydraulic head at the bottom boundary of the soil cover is adopted as the performance function. Results show that the hysteretic hydraulic model predicts a more conservative result than does the traditional nonhysteretic hydraulic model when simulating seepage in unsaturated, multi-layer soil covers. The dependence of the soil cover performance on its exterior environment during construction is also identified, with a relatively arid season significantly improving the soil cover's functionality. Furthermore, multi-layer soil covers with a proper selection of geotechnical materials provide better performance than a single layer of soil cover of the same thickness. The importance of hydraulic hysteresis in soil covers subjected to alternative climatic actions is emphasized. © 2013 American Society of Civil Engineers.

Co-authorsDaichao Sheng, John Carter
2013Yang C, Sheng D, Carter JP, Huang J, 'Stochastic Evaluation of Hydraulic Hysteresis in Unsaturated Soils', JOURNAL OF GEOTECHNICAL AND GEOENVIRONMENTAL ENGINEERING, 139 1211-1214 (2013) [C1]
DOI10.1061/(ASCE)GT.1943-5606.0000833Author URL
CitationsScopus - 1Web of Science - 1
Co-authorsJohn Carter, Daichao Sheng, Jinsong Huang
2013Wang SY, Sun L, Yang C, Yang SQ, Tang CA, 'Numerical study on static and dynamic fracture evolution around rock cavities', Journal of Rock Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering, 5 262-276 (2013) [C1]
DOI10.1016/j.jrmge.2012.10.003Author URL
CitationsScopus - 1
2013Ma S, Huang M, Hu P, Yang C, 'Soil-water characteristics and shear strength in constant water content triaxial tests on Yunnan red clay', Journal of Central South University, 20 1412-1419 (2013) [C1]
2012Yang C, Sheng D, Carter JP, 'Effect of hydraulic hysteresis on seepage analysis for unsaturated soils', Computers and Geotechnics, 41 36-56 (2012) [C1]
CitationsScopus - 10Web of Science - 6
Co-authorsDaichao Sheng, John Carter
2012Sheng D, Yang C, 'Discussion of fundamental principles in unsaturated soil mechanics', Yantu Gongcheng Xuebao/Chinese Journal of Geotechnical Engineering, 34 438-456 (2012) [C1]
CitationsScopus - 3
Co-authorsDaichao Sheng
2009Huang M, Yang C, Cui Y, 'An Elasto-Plastic Bounding Surface Model for Unsaturated Soils under Cyclic Loading', Yantu Gongcheng Xuebao, 31 817-823 (2009) [C1]
CitationsScopus - 2
2008Yang C, Cui Y, Pereira J-M, 'A Constitutive Model for Unsaturated Cemented Soils under Cyclic Loading', Computers and Geotechnics, 35 853-859 (2008) [C1]
CitationsScopus - 21Web of Science - 15
2008Yang C, Cui Y, Huang M, 'Damage Model for Unsaturated Structured Loess under Cyclic Loading', Yanshi Lixue Yu Gongcheng Xuebao, 27 805-810 (2008) [C1]
CitationsScopus - 4
2007Huang M, Li Z, Yang C, 'Analysis of the Shielding effect of a pile group adjacent to tunneling', Tumu Gongcheng Xuebao, 40 69-74 (2007) [C1]
2007Yang C, Huang M, Liu M, 'Three-Dimensional Numerical Analysis of Pile Response due to Tunneling', Yanshi Lixue Yu Gongcheng Xuebao, 26 2601-2607 (2007) [C1]
2005Yang C, Liu X, Wang G, 'Analysis of Pressure Change Law of Hard-Clayey Foundation Pit', Journal of Liaoning Technical University, 24 856-858 (2005) [C1]
2004Yang C, Luo Y, Zhang Y, 'The Visualization of Calculation of Uniform Steel in Compresol Piles with Round Cross-Section', Geotechnical Engineering Technique, 18 299-302 (2004) [C1]
Show 13 more journal articles

Conference (6 outputs)

2015Yang C, Carter JP, Sheng D, 'On the compression behaviour of structured soils', Computer Methods and Recent Advances in Geomechanics - Proceedings of the 14th Int. Conference of International Association for Computer Methods and Recent Advances in Geomechanics, IACMAG 2014 (2015)

Structured soils exhibit an apparent non-linear normal compression line in the semi-log compression plane, which dominates the difference in the mechanical behaviour between structured soils and their reconstituted counterparts. The effect of soil structure is investigated via the change of compression stiffness with structure degradation. A differential expression of the normal compression line is then established and applied to a large number of different types of soil. Satisfactory results are obtained, illustrating the validity and applicability of the proposed approach. © 2015 Taylor & Francis Group, London.

Co-authorsJohn Carter, Daichao Sheng
2014Yang C, Yang CS, Liu XF, 'An improved modeling of hydro-mechanical behavior of unsaturated compacted soils', Unsaturated Soils: Research and Applications, London (2014) [E1]
Co-authorsXianfeng Liu
2014Yang C, Sheng D, Carter JP, Pineda J, Kelly R, 'From compression behavior to plastic anisotropy of reconstituted soft soils', Geotechnical Special Publication (2014) [E1]

The plastic anisotropy of reconstituted soft soils is described from the compression behaviour observed during radial loading paths in stress space. A unique relationship is established between the orientation of the yield surface and the corresponding normal compression line, which indicates that a stabilized fabric is maintained under continuous loading along radial stress paths. The equilibrium orientation angle of the plastic potential surface is obtained explicitly. A new rotational hardening law is proposed by considering the dependence of the evolution of anisotropic fabric with the current stress condition and plastic strain. An elastoplastic constitutive model for anisotropic soil is formulated within the framework of Critical State Soil Mechanics. Validation with experimental data and predictions from other models demonstrate the feasibility of the basic concept and the capacity of the proposed new model. © 2014 American Society of Civil Engineers.

CitationsScopus - 1
Co-authorsJohn Carter, Jubert Pineda, Daichao Sheng
2011Yang C, Huang MS, Cui Y-J, 'Constitutive model of unsaturated structured soils under cyclic loading', Proceedings of the Fifth International Conference on Unsaturated Soils, Barcelona, Spain (2011) [E1]
2011Yang C, Sheng D, Carter JP, 'Numerical modelling of hydraulic hysteresis in unsaturated soil covers', Computer Methods for Geomechanics: Frontiers and New Applications. Volume 2, Melbourne, VIC (2011) [E1]
Co-authorsJohn Carter, Daichao Sheng
2011Yang C, Sheng D, Carter JP, 'Hysteretic seepage analysis in unsaturated soil covers', Unsaturated Soils: Theory and Practice, Pattaya, Thailand (2011) [E1]
Co-authorsDaichao Sheng, John Carter
Show 3 more conferences

Dr Chao Yang


Reseach Academic
Centre of Geotechnical and Material Modelling
School of Engineering
Faculty of Engineering and Built Environment

Contact Details
Phone(02) 4921 5893


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