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Construction and Civil Engineering Using Geosynthetics

Looking for an overview of construction and civil engineering using geosynthetics? This blog covers the basics of geosynthetic materials and their use in construction and civil engineering projects. Learn about the different types of geosynthetics and their applications.

Different kinds of geosynthetics are employed in civil engineering and construction projects. Geosynthetics’ characteristics, uses, and applications are described. The restricted funding options for projects along with the depleting sources of granular and other basic raw materials have created new chances for creative engineering to produce cost-effective solutions. The use of geosynthetics in the discipline of civil engineering is one of these breakthroughs. In addition to substituting for limited raw resources like cement and steel, geosynthetics are recognized as legitimate engineering materials and are proving to be an excellent and solid alternative to traditional designs.

Although geosynthetics are still a relatively new technology in the construction industry, their utilization is growing every year in areas including fill reinforcement, pore water pressure management, foundations, and pavements. In addition to being affordable, they may be quickly installed and aid in the quality monitoring of goods produced in factories. Today, geosynthetics are seen as essential to finding an affordable solution for a variety of tasks, including reinforcement, separation, filtration, drainage, barriers, erosion control, containment, and protection. Planar, polymeric (synthetic or natural) materials utilized in contact with soil, rock, or any other geotechnical material for filtration, drainage, separation, reinforcement, protection, sealing, and packing are known as geosynthetics or geosynthetic materials.

Also Read: Foundations and Retaining Walls

Different Geosynthetic Material Types Used in Civil Engineering and Construction

The types of geosynthetics utilized in civil engineering are as follows:

  1. Geotextiles
  2. Geogrids
  3. Geonets
  4. Geomembranes
  5. vertical drains that are prefabricated
  6. Clay geotextile lining
  7. Geocells
  8. Geocomposites

Geosynthetics’ Uses in Civil Engineering and Construction

  • Structure for soil reinforcement.
  • support for the soil reinforcement structure’s base reinforcement
  • The separation between locally-occurring dirt and imported soil to prevent mixing and poor mechanical performance
  • Behind every hydraulic structure, filtering
  • Controlled drainage at the top 8 meters to catch any seepage water flowing from the other side of the embankment to prevent contamination of the structural fill
  • Erosion control blanket to safeguard the top slope and prevent erosion.

Table: Types of Geosynthetics and their Uses


Types of geosynthetics Separations Reinforcement Filteration Drainage Containment
Geosynthetic clay liner
Geo Pipe

Geosynthetics: Applications in Civil Engineering and Construction

The dividing of Soil Layers

A layer of geosynthetic is placed between the geotechnical entities to keep the imported material and the in-situ soil apart. In order to prevent the qualities of the imported material from being affected by the application of loads, this is done. Nonwoven geotextile, geofoam, and geocomposites can be placed between the imported material and the in-situ soil, depending on the local environmental circumstances. They are typically used where temporary and permanent roads meet subgrade/sub-base, where rail-road blast meets foundation soil, and where embankment fill meets soft foundation soil.

Refinement of Water

Extreme harm can result from improper water management on the property; one of the worst effects that negligence could have is soil erosion in a specific location. A geocomposite clay liner (GCL) is positioned beneath all hydraulic structures to help prevent the formation of irreparable gullies, which is a common effect of it. It is advised to utilize nonwoven geotextile as this is an expensive choice to stay under budget.

Drainage Projects

If water isn’t effectively confined on the edges of something like an embankment, the water table will rise, which will further complicate matters with regard to pore pressure. The rise in pore pressure frequently necessitates an extra 50% of reinforcement. To prevent this, a geocomposite liner with a perforated pipe at the bottom to collect water is typically added at the back of the reinforced structure. The hydraulic structures are then linked to the pipe.

Soil Stabilization

1) Base augmentation

At the level of the reinforced structure’s foundation, basal reinforcement is offered. To determine the soil’s carrying capability, a typical penetration test is performed. Basal reinforcement, in the form of Geogrid reinforcement, is offered if the bearing capacity is between 10 and 60 Kpa. This is done to prevent failure that might have resulted from the foundation’s un-drained shear stress.

2) Soil augmentation

Geosynthetic soil reinforcement technology requires effort to cut the geogrid to the necessary length and install it on site. When either the soil carrying capacity is low or the layers are compressible, when in a landslide-prone zone, when there is excessive rutting, or when there are uneven settlements, the soil reinforcement is typically laid. It enables the slope to be steepened, maintaining the building inside the lines while also reducing the need for earthmoving and dirt imports. The geogrids employed are linear low-density polyethylene-coated high-tensile polyester geogrids that serve as primary reinforcement while preventing installation damage. An intermediate secondary reinforcement is provided by a double-twisted mesh. A gabion face is employed in areas where hydraulic constructions are necessary.

Control of Soil Erosion

Gabions, geotextiles, and mattresses are frequently employed as erosion control measures. Additionally, geotextile filters and geotextile reinforcement guarantee stability during conditions of abrupt drawdown and saturation during the rainy season.

Nonwoven geotextiles serve as reinforcements, drains, and filter separators. For erosion prevention, a cost-effective pre-formed unit with primary reinforcement consisting of double-twisted mesh is utilized.


Geosynthetics are a critical element of a construction or civil engineering project. From reinforcing earthworks and erosion control to water retention and direct waste containment, they are valuable assets that should be used in all projects. We wrote this article to help our readers understand the different ways geosynthetics can be used, and how they can be incorporated into a project. If you have any other questions about geosynthetics, we will be happy to answer them for you.

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