Laboratory measurements of porosity and compressional velocity were conducted on unconsolidated brine saturated clean Ottawa sand, pure kaolinite, and their mixtures at various confining pressures. A peak in P velocity versus clay content in unconsolidated sand-clay mixtures at 40 percent clay by weight was found. The peak in velocity is 20-30 percent higher than for either pure clay or clean sand. A minimum in porosity versus clay content at 20-40 percent clay by weight is also observed. Such behavior is explained using a micro-geometrical model for mixtures of sand and clay in which two classes of sediments are considered: (1) sands and shaley sands, in which clay is dispersed in the pore space of load bearing sand and thus reduces porosity and increases the elastic moduli of the pore-filling material and (2) shales and sandy shales, in which sand grains are dispersed in a clay matrix. For these sediments, the model reproduces the extrema in velocity and porosity and accounts for much of the scatter in the velocity-porosity relationship.

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