Potential use of lignosulfonate for expansive soil stabilisation

Thomas Telford Ltd.
Publication Type:
Journal Article
Environmental Geotechnics, 2019, 6, (7), pp. 480-488
Issue Date:
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This study involved the laboratory evaluation of the effectiveness of lignosulfonate (LS) admixture in improving engineering properties (i.e. swell potential, unconfined compressive strength, durability, compaction characteristics, permeability, consolidation characteristics and shrinkage behaviour) of a remoulded expansive soil. Standard geotechnical laboratory tests performed on untreated and LS-treated soil specimens compacted at optimum moisture content and maximum dry unit weight showed significant and consistent improvements in the engineering properties of the soil. The swell potential of the soil decreased by 23% while maintaining its ductility and pH value. The improved soil resistance to repeated freeze-thaw/wet-dry cycles was also observed in the LS-treated specimens. Likewise, the compressive strength, consolidation characteristics and shrinkage limit improved appreciably. However, the compaction characteristics and permeability of the treated soil remained relatively unchanged. With over 50 Mt of global annual production of LS, the successful use of LS as an alternative admixture for expansive soil stabilisation provides viable solutions to the sustainable use of the lignin by-products from paper manufacturing industry.
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