# Shrinkage Limit

Written by Jerry Ratzlaff on . Posted in Geotechnical Engineering

Shrinkage limit, abbreviated as SL, a dimensionless number, is the maximum water content at which further reduction in the water content will not cause decrease in volume of soil. Other words it goes from semi-solid to a solid state.

## Shrinkage limit formula

$$\large{ SL = \frac{ \left(m_1 \;-\; m_2\right) \;-\; \left(V_1 \;-\; V_2\right) \; PL }{ m_2 } }$$
Symbol English Metric
$$\large{ SL }$$ = shrinkage limit $$\large{dimensionless}$$
$$\large{ m_1 }$$  = inlet wet mass of soil $$\large{lbm}$$ $$\large{kg}$$
$$\large{ m_2 }$$  = final dry mass of soil $$\large{lbm}$$ $$\large{kg}$$
$$\large{ V_1 }$$  = inlet volume of soil $$\large{ft^3}$$ $$\large{m^3}$$
$$\large{ V_2 }$$  = final volume of dry soil $$\large{ft^3}$$ $$\large{m^3}$$
$$\large{ PL }$$  =  plastic limit $$\large{dimensionless}$$