Frost heave and thaw weakening cause extensive damage to roads and airfields in cold regions. The H2Ri wicking fabric, which is newly developed by TENCATE GEOSYNTHETICS, shows great promises as a cost-effective means of controlling moisture migration and mitigate the frost heave and subsequent thaw weakening. Available data and field observations at different applications have clearly indicated that H2Ri wicking fabric has successfully facilitated the road construction, eliminated the frost boil problem, and resulted in significant cost savings (Zhang et al. 2014; Lin et al. 2016; Currey 2017). In the original design, H2Ri is required to be exposed at the roadside. Concerns have been raised regarding whether (1) H2Ri will degrade due to sunlight exposure, (2) salts in the soil water can cause H2Ri clogging and losing function in the long run, and (3) maintenance could be a problem. In a recent completed CESTiCC project entitled “A Bio-Wicking System to Prevent Frost Heave in Alaskan Pavements,” elementary box and flume tests were used to evaluate if the bio-wicking system can be used to address the above concerns. Preliminary results from the previous project indicate that bio-wicking is a feasible way to resolve the potential concerns in the use of H2Ri wicking fabric to mitigate the frost heave and thaw weakening.
For more information, please review the Project Information document.