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2021, 14(4): 703-728 Back to browse issues page
Laboratory Studies of Nanoparticles Hybrid Effects on the Improvement of the Soil around the Razavi Holy Shrine
Soheil Ghareh *1, Kimiya Yazdani, Fatemeh Akhlaghi
1- , ghareh_soheil@pnu.ac.ir
Abstract:   (1197 Views)
The existence of problematic soils due to their geotechnical properties, such as low strength and stability, high compressibility, and swelling, is one of the most important issues and challenges that geotechnical and civil engineers are faced in urban environments, especially in metropolises. Various methods are used to stabilize and to improve the behavior of problematical soils such as compaction, consolidation, stone columns, jet grouting, biological procedures, and additive materials including nanomaterials. Because of their high specific surface, the use of nanoparticles is very effective to increase the shear and mechanical strength parameters of soil. Mashhad city is located on alluvial deposits of Mashhad Plain. A wide area of this city, especially the central and eastern areas where the Imam Reza holy shrine is located, has been built on weak and fine-grained deposits. Considering constructing high-rise buildings such as hotels and commercial complexes in these areas, as well as the need for restructuring the urban decay, the soil improvement will be inevitable. Given the significant application of these nanoparticles, the purpose of this study is to investigate the effects of nanoclay and nanosilica on each other and to find their optimal composition as a suitable alternative for traditional materials to improve the weak and problematic soils. This not only increases the bearing capacity and strength properties but also reduces the cost and time of project implementation.
Method and Materials
To achieve a hybrid with maximum strength and bearing capacity in executable projects, laboratory tests were performed on the soil picked up from the vicinity around Razavi holy shrine in Mashhad mixed with nanoclay and nanosilica. The type of soil is classified as CL-ML based on sieve and hydrometer tests. The nanoclay used in this research is the type of montmorillonite- K10, and the nanosilica is as a powdered shape with 99% purity.
At first, nanoclay and nanosilica were mixed independently with soil in six different weight ratios (0%, 0.1%, 0.5%, 1%, 2.5%, & 5%) and (0%, 0.1%, 0.25%, 0.5%, 0.75%, & 1%). Soil mechanical and strength properties, including compressive and shear strength, settlement, plasticity index, and swelling, were studied by standard laboratory tests on all specimens. After determining the optimum ratio of each nanoparticle, four hybrids consisting of nanosilica and nanoclay were made in four different combinations and then the effects of these four hybrids were investigated on the soil in the laboratory scale (Table 1).
Table 1. Composition of hybrids made with different percentages of nanomaterials
Nanomaterials composition Hybrid Name
5% Nanoclay + 0.25% Nanosilica 5NC + 0.25NS
5% Nanoclay  1% Nanosilica 5NC + 1NS
2.5% Nanoclay + 0.25% Nanosilica 2.5NC + 0.25NS
2.5% Nanoclay + 1% Nanosilica 2.5NC + 1NS
The results of the Atterberg limit test on improved and pure soil indicate that the addition of nanoclay and nanosilica and the optimized ratios of these nanoparticles hybrid to increase the soil resistance parameters did not change the soil swelling index.
Evaluation of shear strength test results showed a significant synergistic effect of these nanoparticles on increasing the shear strength parameters. The nanoparticles hybrid of 2.5% nanosilica and 1% nanosilica increased the cohesion up to 106% and also hybrids of 5% nanosilica and 1% nanosilica increased the internal friction angle of soil up to 32%.
Examination of unconfined compressive strength tests presented a 134% increase in the compressive strength of the specimen improved with 2.5% nanoclay and a 620% increase in soil improved with 1% nanosilica. The optimum hybrid compositions of 5% nanoclay and 1% nanosilica increased significantly the compressive strength of the studied soil up to 785% and reduced the settlement of the soil by 60% compared to pure soil.
  1. Laboratory studies of electron microscopy examination on ​​pure and improved soil samples with nanoparticle hybrid revealed the presence of these particles in pores of the improved soil. On the other hand, the high specific surface area of ​​the nanoparticles increased the interaction of the soil particles, and the effect of adding these nanoparticles on the refining process is observed in compressive strength increase.
As the nanoclay, nanosilica, and hybrid of nanoparticles are the results of soil processing, these particles are very effective to solve the environmental problems because of good compatibility with soil environments. In addition, low volumes of nanoclay, nanosilica, and hybrid in these nanoparticles are necessary to increase the compressive strength and decrease the settlement of soil. Therefore, using these nanoparticles at the project site reduces significantly the cost and execution time of the project.
Keywords:  Soil improvement, Hybrid, Nanoclay, Nanosilica, Bearing Capacity.
Full-Text [PDF 1082 kb]   (507 Downloads)    
Type of Study: Research (Special) | Subject: Geotecnic
Received: 2019/09/7 | Accepted: 2019/12/21 | Published: 2020/11/30
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Ghareh S, Yazdani K, Akhlaghi F. Laboratory Studies of Nanoparticles Hybrid Effects on the Improvement of the Soil around the Razavi Holy Shrine. Journal of Engineering Geology. 2021; 14 (4) :703-728
URL: http://jeg.khu.ac.ir/article-1-2896-en.html

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Volume 14, Issue 4 (1-2021) Back to browse issues page
نشریه زمین شناسی مهندسی Journal of Engineering Geology
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