Soil Stabilisation and Retention System Explained

What Is Soil Stabilisation & Retention Systems?

Soil stabilisation and retention refer to techniques and methods used to improve the strength and stability of the soil, particularly in construction projects where the soil needs to support structures, roads or other heavy loads. 

At CGI Solutions, we have vast experience in ground improvements. As experts in solving foundation problems here in Perth, we have put together this article to explore the differences between soil stabilisation and soil retention and how.


Soil Stabilisation 

Soil stabilisation involves altering the physical or chemical properties of soil to make it more durable and resistant to erosion, compression or settlement. This can include techniques like adding cement, lime, or other chemical additives to the soil to improve its strength or using geotextiles and other materials to reinforce the soil.


Soil Retention

Soil retention, on the other hand, involves preventing soil erosion or slippage on slopes or hillsides. This can be achieved by using techniques like retaining walls, gabion walls, or other types of erosion control structures, as well as planting vegetation to stabilise the soil and prevent erosion.

Both soil stabilisation and retention are important for ensuring the safety and longevity of construction projects, as well as for preventing environmental damage caused by soil erosion and instability.


The Value of Soil Stabilisation

Soil stabilisation is the process of improving the stability and load-bearing capacity of soil on a construction site. It is an important consideration in many construction projects, particularly those that involve heavy equipment or structures that require a stable foundation. Here are some of the key factors involved in soil stabilisation:

Soil testing: Before any stabilisation work can begin, the soil must be tested to determine its properties and characteristics. This can include testing for things like soil composition, moisture content, density and load-bearing capacity.

Choosing a stabilisation method: There are a variety of soil stabilisation techniques that can be used depending on the specific needs of the project. Some common methods include adding stabilising agents like lime or cement to the soil, creating deep soil mixing columns, or using soil nails or other reinforcement structures.

Preparation of the site: Once the stabilisation method has been chosen, the site must be prepared for the work. This may involve clearing vegetation, excavating the soil, or grading the site to ensure a level surface.

Application of the stabilisation method: The chosen stabilisation method is then applied to the soil. This may involve mixing in stabilising agents, constructing soil reinforcement structures, or other methods depending on the specific technique used.

Testing and monitoring: After the stabilisation work has been completed, the soil is typically tested and monitored to ensure that it has achieved the required level of stability and load-bearing capacity.

Overall, soil stabilisation is an important consideration in many construction projects, and it requires careful planning and execution to ensure a stable and safe foundation for the project. By working with experienced engineers and contractors and choosing the appropriate stabilisation method, construction projects can be completed with confidence and safety.


Stabilisation methods

There are several methods for soil stabilisation, and the choice of method depends on the specific soil characteristics, the intended use of the stabilised soil, and the project requirements. Here are some of the most common soil stabilisation methods:

  1. Chemical stabilisation: This method involves adding chemicals such as lime, cement, fly ash, or other additives to the soil to improve its physical properties, such as strength, durability, and workability.
  2. Mechanical stabilisation: This method involves altering the soil’s physical properties by mixing it with other materials, such as gravel, crushed stone, or asphalt. This helps to increase the soil’s load-bearing capacity and reduce its susceptibility to erosion.
  3. Electro-chemical stabilisation: This method involves passing an electric current through the soil to change its properties, such as increasing its density and strength. This technique is often used in soil improvement for weak soils, such as soft clays.
  4. Biopolymer stabilisation: This method involves adding biopolymer materials to the soil to improve its properties. Biopolymers can help to reduce soil erosion and increase soil stability, while also promoting plant growth and improving soil health.
  5. Soil reinforcement: This method involves adding reinforcement elements, such as geotextiles, geogrids, or steel bars, to the soil to improve its load-bearing capacity and prevent soil movement or deformation.
  6. Thermal stabilisation: This method involves heating the soil to improve its physical properties. Thermal stabilisation can be done in situ or ex situ and is often used to improve the properties of soil for road construction.


The CGI Solution

In our extensive experience in tackling foundation problems in Perth, chemical grout injection provides a versatile and innovative solution and is fast becoming the preferred method in ground improvements.

Chemical grout is a low viscosity cement that is injected into the pores of the soil without displacing or changing the soil structure. It binds with existing soil and will achieve its maximum compressive strength for excavations within a week.


Microfine & Ultrafine Grout Injection 

Advanced forms of chemical grout injection called Microfine and Ultrafine grout injection utilise a special grout material with minute particle sizes for a more precise and effective outcome.

In Microfine grout injection, a grout material with a particle size of less than 10 microns is used, which allows it to infiltrate even the smallest cracks and voids in the soil or structure, resulting in an even more comprehensive and efficient seal. 

Ultrafine grout injection uses even finer grout material with a particle size of less than 1 micron. This can penetrate even smaller cracks and voids, making for an even more precise and effective seal. 

Both Microfine and Ultrafine grout injection methods are widely used in scenarios where precise control over the injection process is necessary, such as in repairing concrete structures, tunnels or other underground infrastructure. They are also used in applications where traditional grouting methods may not suffice, such as in the stabilisation of loose or sandy soils. 

This approach is favoured by CGI Solutions because it is non-invasive and incredibly versatile. 

It is the preferred method of choice for our clients who range from commercial and residential construction engineers, contractors, pool installers, plumbers, electricians, form workers, land developers as well as retaining wall specialists carpenters and landscapers.


Soil Retention & Excavations 

Soil retention is an important consideration in construction projects, particularly those that involve excavation or grading. During construction, soil may need to be moved or removed in order to prepare the site for building. However, this can also leave the site vulnerable to erosion and instability.

Soil retention techniques can be used in construction to help prevent erosion and maintain soil stability. These techniques may include using retaining walls or other structures to hold soil in place, creating terraces or other features to slow the flow of water, or using geotextile fabrics or erosion control blankets to protect soil from erosion.

In addition to preventing erosion, soil retention in construction can also help to minimise disruption to the surrounding environment. By protecting the soil and minimising the impact of construction activities, projects can be completed more quickly and with less impact on the local ecosystem.

Overall, soil retention is an important consideration in construction projects, and contractors and engineers should be aware of the potential impact of their activities on the surrounding environment. By implementing effective soil retention techniques, they can help to minimise environmental damage and ensure a safe and stable construction site.


Soil Stabilisation

For more examples of soil stabilisation go to our projects page.


Why Consider Soil Stabilisation?

There are several reasons why companies should consider soil stabilisation techniques in construction projects, including:

Improved stability: Soil stabilisation techniques can improve the stability of the soil, making it better able to support heavy loads and structures. This can help prevent settlement or other types of soil failure, which can be costly and dangerous.

Reduced erosion: Soil stabilisation can help prevent erosion, particularly on slopes or hillsides, which can help protect the surrounding environment and prevent damage to nearby properties.

Cost-effectiveness: Soil stabilisation techniques can often be more cost-effective than other methods of soil improvement, such as excavation and replacement, particularly in areas with limited access or where soil conditions are difficult.

Time-saving: Soil stabilisation can be completed quickly and efficiently, allowing construction projects to be completed on time or even ahead of schedule.

Environmental benefits: Soil stabilisation techniques can help reduce the environmental impact of construction projects, by preventing erosion and protecting the surrounding ecosystem.


Overall, soil stabilisation techniques can be a valuable investment for companies involved in construction projects, helping to ensure the safety, stability, and longevity of the built environment. If you have any questions or concerns about soil stabilisation and retention then CGI Solutions would be only too happy to talk to you about your Perth underpinning requirements. Contact us today to discuss your project. At CGI Solutions our capabilities and competencies include home underpinning and all solving all foundation problems you may experience. 

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