The Rankine horizontal stress method is a very common and simple approach in calculating the active force behind a gravity retaining wall. However, because numerous assumptions have to be made a ...

The Rankine horizontal stress method is a very common and simple approach in calculating the active force behind a gravity retaining wall. However, because numerous assumptions have to be made a deviation among results will arise, although the degree of this discrepancy have been previously defined as negligible and is typically ignored.

A full wedge analysis was performed using the program Wolfram Mathematica<sup>®</sup> to specifically outline the degree of this discrepancy. Results showed that the deviation among the calculated active force was relative to the conditions of the retaining system, and can be substantial at times. Additionally, it was revealed that the difference among results could not be defined as negligible or substantial unless a full wedge analysis was performed.

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