• Stabilization of marginal soils using geofibers and nontraditional additives

      Collins, Rodney Wotherspoon (2011-08)
      Western Alaska lacks gravel suitable for construction of roads and airports. As a result, gravel is imported, at a cost of between $200 and $600 per cubic yard, to fill transportation construction needs. In an effort to reduce these costs, the Alaska University Transportation Center (AUTO) began searching for methods to use local materials in lieu of imported gravel. The approach discussed in this thesis uses geofibers and chemical additives to achieve soil stabilization. Geofibers and chemical additives are commercially available products. The goal of the research presented in this thesis is to test the impact of addition of two geofiber types, six chemical additives, and combinations of geofibers with chemical additives on a wide variety of soil types. California Bearing Ratio (CBR) testing was used to measure the effectiveness of the treatments. Soils ranging from poorly graded sand (SP) to low plasticity silt (ML) were all effectively stabilized using geofibers, chemical additives, or a combination of the two. Through the research conducted a new method of soil stabilization was developed which makes use of curing accelerators in combination with chemical additives. This method produced CBR values above 300 for poorly graded sand after a seven day cure.