Embankments

An application concept for geofoam use as light-weight fill for embankment construction is shown above. Construction would begin with placement of a granular leveling course. Geofoam would then be placed in successive layers to construct the embankment. A 10 to 15 cm thick reinforced concrete slab or a membrane cover may be provided over the top of the geofoam. The concrete slab would help in load distribution. Both the slab and membrane serve as protection against very rare spillage of fluids that can damage geofoam. Guard rails can be tied to the concrete slab or supported on separate footing. The geofoam side slopes would be covered with soil, light weight fill or protective facing. A road structure suitable for the anticipated traffic, and with adequate cover to minimize possibilities for differential icing can, where necessary, be constructed above the geofoam fill. This technique does not require pre-loading and removal normally associated with embankment construction on soft ground. Side slopes at 2:1 or even in vertical finish can be developed because geofoam imposes very light loads on the foundation and can be constructed to interlock. Geofoam embankments require less maintenance and develop minimal post-construction settlements compared to embankments constructed with natural soils.


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