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Reinforcement geosynthetics

Case Studies | April 1, 2009 | By:

Subject: (None) — Is there a specific geosynthetic product to aid in the support of a single-story building? The project is located in central Florida, over roughly 6ft of fill. (Rick, Ohio)

Reply: You ask a common question concerning the possible foundation support of using a high strength geotextile or geogrid. That said, using such a geosynthetic material over the entire footprint of a building will simply not cure a uniformly weak subgrade soil. The geosynthetic will subside (along with the building) as the soil consolidates or compacts. In essence, it “goes along for the ride.”

Where reinforcement geosynthetics come into play is when the soil subsidence is not uniform. This is when differential settlement occurs and now the reinforcement material is stressed in tension and it resists accordingly. Several design models are available. The key variable is the extent of the differential subsidence, which greatly affects the required tensile strength of the reinforcement.

Bob Koerner | GMA Techline

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