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Embankment stabilization

Development in progress • Protected by patent
Stabilizing additive based on river sediments to replace lime and cement, for ecological and economic embankments.

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Market benefits

  • Less expensive than lime and cement
  • Less energy consuming than lime and cement manufacturing
  • Ecological (less natural resources needed)
  • More accessible than coal fly ash or slag from steel industry

Issue

In the field of civil engineering, each construction or structure sets up on a natural land. When such structures must withstand large loads and must settle on a low bearing soil (compressible ground, flood zone, etc.), reinforcement of the land called embankment is proceeded to ensure good transmission of forces to the ground. This is particularly the case for infrastructure like roads, walkways, paths, cycle paths, car parks and embankments along roads.
Embankments are mainly composed of fine-grained soils stabilized by mixing with binding agents such as lime, cement or hydraulic road binder. Manufacture of lime and cement requires high power consumption for heating (over 1000°C), with a high economic impact therefore. Manufacture of lime and cement is neither ecological since raw materials come from limestone and clay quarries. Cement and lime can be partly substituted by pozzolanic materials such as coal fly ash or slag from steel industry. However, these materials tend to lack due to reductions in the use of coal as a fuel, and decreasing of steel activities.

Solution

We developed a new embankment stabilization process with economical and ecological improvements for equivalent performance.
- More cost-effective because less energy is needed for the manufacture of our stabilizing agent: a lower temperature (< 850°C) and limited duration (< 6 hours).
- More environmentally friendly because raw materials are basically riverbed sediments, easily recoverable in reservoirs upstream from dam for example.
Our innovation helps to reduce costs and environmental impact of any construction: building, road, rail, platform, etc.

Beyond embankments, our processed riverbed sediments could be used also for manufacture of cement (clinker powder substitution) or concrete (replacing cement powder).