Geotextiles are permeable
fabrics which, when used in association with soil, have the ability to separate, filter, reinforce, protect, or drain. Typically made from polypropyleneor polyester, geotextile fabrics come in three basic forms: woven (looks like mail bag sacking), needle punched (looks like felt), or heat bonded (looks like ironed felt).
As the use of geotextile fabrics has expanded, geotextile composites have been introduced and products such as geogrids and meshes have been developed. Overall, these materials are referred to as
geosyntheticsand each configuration—- geonets, geogrids and others—- can yield certain benefits in geotechnical and environmental engineeringdesign. These products have a wide range of applications and are currently used to advantage in many civil engineeringapplications including roads, airfields, railroads, embankments, retaining structures, reservoirs, canals, dams, bank protectionand coastal engineering. Usually geotextiles will be placed at the tension surface as it will strengthen the soil.
Geotextile can be used as an innovative way to improve soil strength, instead of the conventional manner using
soil nailing. It is believed that the cost to have it done is much cheaper. In addition, steep slopes can then be planted with vegetation to enhance the aesthetic value.
To use geotextiles to reinforce a steep slope, two components have to be calculated:
#the tension required for equilibrium
#the appropriate layout of the geotextile reinforcement
Geotextiles have been used to protect the fossil
hominidfootprints of Laetoliin Tanzaniafrom erosion, rain, and tree roots. [Renfrew, Colin and Paul Bahn, "Archaeology". 4th ed. New York: Thames 2004.]
Hard landscape materials
* [http://www.infratrans.gov.ab.ca/686.htm Alberta Government site on Geotechnical and Erosion Control]
* [http://www.envirotechnicalsystems.com Enviro Technical Systems. Installation of geotextile and geomembrane products]
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