From the design of bottom landfill liner systems to the impact assessment of contaminants on underlying aquifers

  • Nicolò Guarena
  • Andrea Dominijanni
  • Mario ManasseroEmail author
Technical papers


The most recent advancements of the research activity that has been carried out at the Polytechnic University of Turin since the 1990s are presented, with a focus on the design approaches which can be adopted for the optimisation of the engineered clay barriers that are used as a part of the composite liners of solid waste landfills. A particular attention is devoted to the characterisation of the geosynthetic clay liners (GCLs) in terms of their microstructural features and semipermeable properties, which affect both the liquid and contaminant transport and the swelling–shrinking behaviour upon a variation in the chemical and mechanical boundary conditions. In the first part of the paper, novel analytical solutions are derived in order to account for the influence of the chemico-osmotic counter-flow on the leakage rate through a lining system that consists of a geomembrane (GM) overlying a GCL, as well as for the effect of a variation in the GCL swelling pressure on the hydraulic transmissivity of the GM–GCL interface. In the second part of the paper, a steady-state analysis approach is proposed with the aim to include all the aforementioned phenomena in the assessment of the impact of contaminant migration through the landfill bottom liners on the groundwater quality, taking into account the presence of a natural attenuation layer between the GCL and the underlying aquifer.


Bentonite fabric Chemico-osmosis Geomembrane Geosynthetic clay liner Interface transmissivity Swelling pressure 


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Structural, Geotechnical and Building EngineeringPolitecnico di TorinoTurinItaly

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