Geotechnical and Geological Engineering

, Volume 29, Issue 4, pp 505–518 | Cite as

Electro-Osmotic Consolidation Experiments on an Organic Soil

  • Shenbaga R. KanirajEmail author
  • J. H. S. Yee
Original paper


A series of electro-osmotic consolidation experiments were carried out on an organic soil from the central Sarawak region of Malaysia. Commercially available EVD was used to induce electro-osmosis and drainage of pore water. The influence of the method of drainage and pumping interval of drained water on electro-osmotic consolidation was investigated. The combination of electro-osmotic consolidation and chemical stabilization techniques was investigated by installing lime or cement columns near the anode end of the test bed. The binder factor in the lime and cement columns was varied. The paper presents the experimental set-up, test procedures, experimental program, results and conclusions of the study. Electro-osmosis, using EVDs, was effective in the electrokinetic treatment of the organic soil. The two types of drainage, namely drainage at bottom and drainage tubes, were effective. Electro-osmotic consolidation improved with decrease in pumping interval. The lime and cement columns, used in combination with electro-osmosis, increased the undrained strength further.


Cement columns Chemical stabilization Electrokinetic geosynthetics Electro-osmosis Lime columns Organic soil Vertical drains 

List of symbols


Weight of dry binder/weight of dry soil, %


Gross cross-sectional area of flow, m2


Distance from cathode end, mm


Electric field intensity or voltage gradient, ΔV/Δl


Hydraulic gradient, Δh/Δl


Electro-osmotic permeability, m2/sV


Hydraulic coefficient of permeability, m/s


Plasticity index, %


Rate of drainage of water, m3/s


Excess pore water pressure, kPa


Liquid limit, %


Plastic limit, %


Head loss, m


Length of water or current flow path, m


Voltage drop, V


Weight of dry binder mixed with soil/volume of soil, kg/m3


Cement content in cement column


Lime content in lime column


Unit weight of water, kN/m3



The research grant from the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation, Malaysia, to the research project “Electro-osmosis and Electro-stabilization Experiments on Soft Soils of North Sarawak” is acknowledged. The authors thank Mr. R. S. Douglas, Emas Kiara Industries Bhd., Selangor, Malaysia, for providing the EVD for the experiments and Mr H. L. Huong for assistance in conducting the experiments.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Curtin UniversityMiri, SarawakMalaysia

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