Vacuum-assisted consolidation can be an effective alternative for conventional surcharging to improve fine-grained soils. Cost and implementation difficulties were the major drawbacks for its effective use in engineering practice. Recent technological advances in the application of geosynthetic materials have now made on-land vacuum consolidation an attractive and cost-effective alternative to conventional mechanical surcharging for improvement of compressible soils. Experience from recent field applications of on-land vacuum consolidation at the Port of Los Angeles, Tianjin Harbor-China, Japan, and France indicates that the technology holds technical merit and is cost-effective compared to other conventional techniques. Potential uses of vacuum technology currently under consideration by the Port of Los Angeles include improvement of deposits of soft soils in the existing hydraulic fills, strengthening weak foundation soils on the sea floor below the fills or adjacent to Waterfront retaining facilities, and accelerated consolidation of fine-grained hydraulic fills during construction. Application of vacuum-assisted consolidation in the latter cases potentially offers significant advantages.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Civil and Structural Engineering
- Building and Construction
- Geotechnical Engineering and Engineering Geology