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Title: Construction and performance of membrane encapsulated soil layers in Alaska
Authors: Smith, North.
Keywords: Anchouge, Alaska
Cold environments
Fort Wainwright, Alaska
MESL - membrane encapsulated soil layer
Soil moisture migration
Issue Date: Jun-1979
Publisher: Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory (U.S.)
Engineer Research and Development Center (U.S.)
Series/Report no.: CRREL report ; 79-16.
Description: CRREL Report
Abstract: In 1973 two membrane encapsulated soil layer (MESL) test sections were constructed into existing gravel surfaced roads at Elmendorf AFB and at Ft. Wainwright in Anchorage and Fairbanks, Alaska, respectively. The Elmendorf AFB MESL contains a silty clay soil and the Ft. Wainwright MESL contains a nonplastic silt. Both sections were constructed at soil moisture contents of approximately 2% to 3% below optimum for the CE·12 compactive effort. There were no indications of soil moisture migration during freezing in either test section and after-thaw field California Bearing Ratio values were nearly equal to values measured before freezing. There is growing evidence of a slight increase in the overall soil moisture content in the Elmendorf AFB MESL, possibly from moisture entering through the single layer polyethylene sidewalls which were not treated with asphalt emulsion. There is good evidence that the membrane of the same section might have received damage during a soil sampling operation which allowed localized moisture infiltration. A two-layer polyethylene membrane used in the Ft. Wainwright MESL is considered a more positive moisture barrier than the single sheet and a justifiable added cost for permanent construction.
Appears in Collections:CRREL Report

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