The design and construction of embankments on soft foundation soils is a very challenging geotechnical problem. One of the best ground improvement solutions is to construct a base foundation from high modulus stiff geocells from PRS.
PRS-Neoloy cellular confinement improves the moduli of infill materials while increasing the bearing capacity of the soil. The geocell layer stiffness is increased as vertical forces are transferred to hoop stresses on the geocell walls and by passive resistance from surrounding geocells. This creates an “I” beam effect creating a semi-rigid platform over soft soils. The result is a “working platform” enabling heavy construction equipment to move on “solid ground” by effectively increasing the stability of the soft soil, as well as supporting heavy loadings, such as in the construction of oil rigs, wind turbines, and geothermal drilling equipment.
The major geotechnical advantages of the geocell mattress are as follows:
- Mobilizing a higher bearing capacity from the soft subgrade.
- Minimizing differential settlements and lateral spread.
- Mobilizing a higher slope slipping resistance (increasing overall factor of safety).
The Neoloy “working platform” is generated by placing one or more (depending on the subgrade strength, embankment height, etc.) layers of geocells filled with granular material on the weak subgrade. By filling with a suitable granular material the rigid “working platform” acts as a drainage blanket and can be a part of a combined solution with prefabricated vertical drains to accelerate the consolidation process while maintaining a working platform for site construction.