Ralph Bruno joins Propex as executive vice president

October 15, 2009

Propex Operating Co. LLC has named Ralph Bruno executive vice president of its new Performance Technology business unit. The restructuring of the business unit with a direct line to the CEO lays the foundation for future growth and increased service to customers, the company said in a press release. The move was described as “an …

Former Tenax division is now Syntec

October 13, 2009

“Geosynthetics Evolved” is the credo of the newest manufacturer to enter the geosynthetics industry. Syntec, based in Baltimore, is a newly formed company with many familiar faces. In a recent transaction, Syntec acquired the environmental division of Tenax Corp., a well-known name in polymer extrusion technology for the past 50 years. According to a press …

Forecast: More wind turbines coming

October 8, 2009

According to a recent report, the market for wind turbines will continue to grow through 2015, driven by new generation additions as well as replacement of smaller, older turbines with larger, more-efficient turbines. Pike Research, a clean tech market intelligence firm, forecasts that the turbine market will resume its growth in 2011, following three years …

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Geocells: The early days with the Army Corps

October 7, 2009

What many people may not know about the early development of the geocell cellular confinement system is that the material wasn’t always black. In fact, early testing of a “grid confinement” system included wax-coated craft paper; a plastic drainage pipe matrix fastened with staples; paper-thin, hexagon-shaped, glued-aluminum; low- and medium-density recycled materials; pure polyethylene without …

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The professor training courses for geosynthetics: 1994-1998

By David J. Elton and David M. Shannon Introduction Fifteen years ago, the Professor Training Course for Geosynthetics began training U.S. professors to teach geosynthetics at the university level. This paper reviews how the course was conceived, funded and run, and examines the results. Origin The Professor Training Course for Geosynthetics was the brainchild of …

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Geosynthetics: Recalling the days of yore

The history of geosynthetics has been richly documented by our scholars, researchers, writers, and manufacturers—to list but a handful of sources. Excerpts from these sources are offered here as a “look back.” Compiled and edited by Ron Bygness Magazine reports from the early ‘80s From: Industrial Fabric Products Review, July 1981 Geotextiles have revolutionized the …

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Silver anniversary: the Tanque Verde retaining walls

By Ryan R. Berg, P.E., and Ronald P. Anderson, P.E. Introduction Some days it seems like we have been designing and constructing concrete-faced, geosynthetic-reinforced, mechanically stabilized earth (MSE) walls forever, and that this technique of constructing MSE walls has always been a conventional solution to grade separation projects. Certainly today, geogrid-reinforced walls with drycast concrete …

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A young engineer, molasses, and failed sand drains

By Bob Koerner Prior to 1959, the chemical industry used sugar cane (mainly from Cuba) for its source of the carbohydrate sucrose used to produce ethyl alcohol for the manufacture of munitions and alcohol. When Fidel Castro came to power in 1959, this nearby source was abruptly eliminated and the alternative was molasses. Of course, …

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Floating geomembrane cover improves biogas collection, heat retention, and odor control

Canadian corn products refiner, Casco Inc., upgraded its 4-million-gallon wastewater anaerobic digester to include a state-of-the-art insulated, floating geomembrane cover. By Jim McMahon Introduction Casco Inc. is all about the processing of corn products. As one of Canada’s biggest, and oldest, manufacturers of corn-refined ingredients such as sweeteners, starches, oil, and animal feed, its products …

Concerns regarding spark testing

To the editor: While the August/September article on subsurface biofilters was very interesting in demonstrating the wide range of geosynthetics used, I have concerns with the description of spark testing. The method described was: “A probe with a current was passed above the seam with a 25mm [1in.] distance between probe and the seam, and …