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Committee D35 on Geosynthetics meets in San Antonio, Texas

Update | June 1, 2023 | By: Gary T. Torosian

ASTM International’s Committee D35 on Geosynthetics held its first biannual committee meetings of 2023 on January 25-27 in San Antonio, Texas. The meetings started with a special workshop to help define what role our committee should play regarding sustainability. Big thanks to our five distinguished speakers—Dr. Mark Wayne (Tensar International), Chris Quirk (NAUE Geosynthetics Ltd.), Bryan Gee (Tensar International), Charlie Rossignol (Solmax), and Sam Allen (TRI Environmental Inc.). We learned about the myriad ways geosynthetics can and do help with sustainability, how other organizations are addressing sustainability, and how it all starts with us—as individuals—to make personal commitments to change. The workshop concluded with the formation of a special task group focused on outlining recommended action items for the committee.

Speakers and organizers of Committee D35’s Sustainability Workshop held in January, 2023. Pictured, left to right, is Charlie Rossignol, Chris Quirk, Sam Allen, John Allen, and Mark Wayne. (Not pictured: Bryan Gee)

Our technical subcommittee meetings were a great success, with participation from across the globe. Some of the accomplishments and ongoing work items in our subcommittees include the following:

D35.01 on Mechanical Properties: Several standards are being revised, including D4595, Standard Test Method for Tensile Properties of Geotextiles by the Wide-Width Strip Method; D4354, Standard Practice for Sampling of Geosynthetics and Rolled Erosion Control Products (RECPs) for Testing; and D6706, Standard Test Method for Measuring Geosynthetic Pullout Resistance in Soil. Work continues on a new standard for Radial Stiffness of Geogrids and Geosynthetic Composite Stiffness Value. 

D35.02 on Endurance Properties: Some new and exciting work is being conducted within this subcommittee, which saw record attendance in San Antonio. Work is currently being performed to update D1987, Standard Test Method for Biological Clogging of Geotextile Drainage Geocomposites, or Soil/Geotextile Filters; D5262, Creep; D6992, Standard Test Method for Accelerated Tensile Creep and Creep-Rupture of Geosynthetic Materials Based on Time-Temperature Superposition Using the Stepped Isothermal Method; and D7361, Standard Test Method for Accelerated Compressive Creep of Geosynthetic Materials Based on Time-Temperature Superposition Using the Stepped Isothermal Method.

D35.04 on Geosynthetic Clay Liners: Current work includes an update to D5887, Standard Test Method for Measurement of Index Flux Through Saturated Geosynthetic Clay Liner Specimens Using a Flexible Wall Permeameter; and D6496, Standard Test Method for Determining Average Bonding Peel Strength Between Top and Bottom Layers of Needle-Punched Geosynthetic Clay Liners. The next committee week will have some added focus on bentonite-polymer composites, the permeability of excavated GCLs and long-term testing of GCLs.

D35.05 on Geosynthetic Erosion Control: Work continued with new standards for GCCM (geosynthetic cementitious composite mat), such as peel and tensile strength, and revisions to D8030, Standard Practice for Sample Preparation for GCCM; D8173, Standard Guide for Site Preparation, Layout, Installation, and Hydration of Geosynthetic Cementitious Composite Mats; and D8058, Standard Test Method for Determining the Flexural Strength of a Geosynthetic Cementitious Composite Mat (GCCM) Using the Three-Point Bending Test. Also, a new test for the Functional Longevity of rolled erosion control products (RECP) is being worked on.

D35.06 on Geosynthetic Specifications: Progress was made on the following specifications: Installation of a Geogrid for Stabilization; D7465, Ethylene Propylene Diene Terpolymer (EPDM) Sheet Used in Geomembrane Applications; D7613, Flexible Polypropylene Reinforced (fPP-R) and Non-Reinforced (fPP) Geomembranes; and D7239, Hybrid Geosynthetic Paving Mat for Highway Applications.

D35.10 on Geomembranes: Much work (revisions and new standards) is being done to advance four fronts: physical and mechanical properties testing, electrical leak location of geomembrane installations, welding of geomembranes, and several testing guides.

D35.93 Editorial and Terminology: Four new terms were recently approved: “standard atmosphere for testing and conditioning geosynthetics,” “geocell,” “stabilization” and “surface erosion control.” These will all be published in the 2023 revision of D4439, Standard Terminology for Geosynthetics.

Overall, it was a very productive week, and we invite all stakeholders to join us for our next committee meeting—June 7–9, 2023, in Denver, Colo.—where we will continue with this important technical work and celebrate the accomplishments of our committee members with a special awards night. I also invite you to visit our LinkedIn page for current news and information: 

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