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Bio-Enzymatic Stabilization of a Soil Having Poor Engineering Properties

Abstract

Soils with poor engineering properties have been a concern to construction engineers because of the need to strike a balance between safety and economy during earthworks construction. This research work investigates the effects of treating a soil having poor geotechnical properties with a bio-enzyme to determine its suitability for use as road pavement layer material. The elemental composition and microstructure of the soil was determined using energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy and scanning electron microscopy, respectively. The specific gravity, Atterberg limits, compaction, strength and permeability characteristics of the soil was determined for various dosages of the bio-enzyme. The mountain soil is classified as clayey sand and A-2–4, according to unified soil classification and AASHTO classification systems, respectively. With increasing dosage of the bio-enzyme, the plasticity index, maximum dry unit weight and permeability of the soil decreased, while its 28-day California bearing ratio value, unconfined compressive strength and shear strength increased. Consequently, the application of bio-enzyme to the soil improved its plasticity and strength, and reduced its permeability. It, therefore, became more workable and its subgrade quality was improved for use as a road pavement layer material. The stabilized soil can be suitably used for constructing pavement layers of light-trafficked rural (earth) roads, pedestrian walkways and bicycle tracks.

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Correspondence to I. I. Akinwumi.

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Ganapathy, G.P., Gobinath, R., Akinwumi, I.I. et al. Bio-Enzymatic Stabilization of a Soil Having Poor Engineering Properties. Int J Civ Eng 15, 401–409 (2017). https://doi.org/10.1007/s40999-016-0056-8

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Keywords

  • Geotechnical properties
  • Green technology
  • Road construction
  • Soil improvement
  • Sustainability