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WisDOT publishes study on geotextile puncture test methods

News | June 1, 2018 | By:

The intersection of US Highway 29 and US Highway 41/Interstate 41 in Green Bay, Wisconsin

The Wisconsin Department of Transportation (WisDOT) and the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) funded research into puncture test methods for geotextiles, and the report from this study is now available online.

Various tests are conducted to assess and classify a geotextile’s suitability for different applications. One of these tests is the puncture strength test. This test evaluates the ability of geotextiles to withstand stresses and loads during construction, which are among the severe conditions that geotextiles can experience.

The American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) has recently replaced the standard pin puncture strength test, D4833, with the California Bearing Ratio (CBR) puncture strength test, D6241. However, many departments of transportation (DOTs) throughout the country and the FHWA still refer to D4833. Other state DOTs refer to both D4833 and D6241, or provide a list of alternative test methods to be considered in place of either of these tests. This inconsistency is the result of a missing connection between the old and new ASTM standards.

Conducted by researchers from the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee, the WisDOT study sought to correlate the CBR and pin puncture strengths for various categories of geotextiles, regardless of weave type and mass per unit area. Subsequent to this, researchers investigated deterioration of geotextiles due to freeze‐thaw conditioning as well as ultraviolet light exposure. Puncture resistances of materials with like mass per unit area and base material but with different weave type were also examined. Various types of geotextiles (nonwoven and woven) were subjected to testing in accordance with ASTM D4833 and ASTM D6241 standard procedures.

You can download the full report at

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