The Resilient Modulus (MR) is a measure of subgrade material stiffness. A material’s resilient modulus is actually an estimate of its modulus of elasticity (E). While the modulus of elasticity is stress divided by strain for a slowly applied load, resilient modulus is stress divided by strain for rapidly applied loads – like those experienced by pavements.
Resilient modulus is determined using the triaxial test. The test applies a repeated axial cyclic stress of fixed magnitude, load duration and cycle duration to a cylindrical test specimen. While the specimen is subjected to this dynamic cyclic stress, it is also subjected to a static confining stress provided by a triaxial pressure chamber. It is essentially a cyclic version of a triaxial compression test; the cyclic load application is thought to more accurately simulate actual traffic loading.