Deltares: Latest Design for Geotextile Sand Elements (The Netherlands)

Geotextile sand elements can be a cheap and sustainable alternative to traditional solutions such as quarry stone when building dams, dikes or groynes.

One benefit is that local sand can be used as a filler material, eliminating the need to quarry and transport quarry stone, generating savings (particularly for transport) and reducing the burden on the environment.

Nevertheless, these elements are still used relatively little. The main causes: a lack of familiarity with the possibilities they afford and the lack of adequate design rules.

Design Rules and Applications, the editors Adam Bezuijen and Erik Vastenburg, who both work at Deltares, have set out the results of these studies, which cover a number of scale trials in the Deltares Delta flume that generated a great deal of information about the stability, failure mechanisms and operation of the sand elements.

On the basis of the studies, the design rules, which are described and explained extensively in the new publication, were made more stringent. The book also includes examples of calculations showing how the design rules should be put into practice. The authors focus on four applications:

-Geobags: sandbags that can be used, for example, for filling eroded hollows, as flood protection and as emergency dikes.

-Geomats: flat sand elements that can serve to prevent erosion and protect embankments.

-Geotextile tubes: long round geotextile sand elements that are suitable as core material for quays and dams (in shallow water) and for strengthening a dune foot.

-Geotextile containers: suitable as core material for quays and dams (in deep water).

Press Release, December 19, 2012

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