Compaction and consolidation are two different processes which cause volume reduction of soil. These two processes are totally different. The main differences between soil compaction and consolidation process is given below.

 

Compaction-vs-Consolidation

 

 CompactionConsolidation
1 Compaction is a process where a mechanical pressure is used to compress the soil mass for the purpose of soil improvement. Consolidation is a process where steady and static pressure causes compression of saturated soil.
2 Dynamic loads by rapid mechanical methods like tamping, rolling and vibration are applied for a small interval in soil compaction. Static and sustained loading is applied for a long interval in soil consolidation.
3 In compaction process, soil volume is reduced by removing air void from the saturated and dry soil.  In consolidation process, soil volume is reduced by squeezing out pore water from the saturated soil.
4 Compaction of soil is mainly used for sandy soil. Consolidation of soil is mainly used for clayey soil.
5 Compaction is intentionally done to produce a high unit weight of soil and consequently improve other soil properties. Consolidation is a natural process where soil below the building and other structure compacted by the transferred load to the soil through the provided foundation system.

 

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