Examples of geosynthetics usage in civil engineering include use of geogrids as structural reinforcement for embankment slopes and retaining structures, use of filter fabric to prevent migration of soil fines into gravel drains, use of synthetic liners (in combination with low-permeability soils) to enclose waste impoundments, use of geocomposite drains to provide passages to permit controlled water movement, and use of synthetic reinforcement to stabilize the surface of slopes and constructed stream channels. D'Appolonia routinely performs engineering analyses that account for the composite behavior of soil and geosynthetics. We utilize geosynthetic materials in our designs when they provide an advantage from a technical and economic standpoint.

Construction of a drain at a mine refuse impoundment site. Note the use of geotextile wrapping to minimize infiltration of soil fines into the drain.

Descriptions of D'Appolonia projects involving geosynthetics applications are provided in the following:


Highland Park Reservoir Embankment Repair

D’Appolonia was retained by the City of Pittsburgh Department of Engineering to perform a subsurface exploration program and to develop corrective measures for an embankment supporting small-scale railroad tracks for the Pittsburgh Zoo train. We designed and supervised the construction of a geogrid-reinforced granular buttress to remediate the damaged slope and restore the slope bench on which the railroad track was located.

Preparation of Landfill Operation and Closure Plans

D’Appolonia carried out a site exploration program, performed slope stability analyses for landfill embankments, and prepared plans and specifications for closure of a municipal waste landfill in New Jersey. The landfill cover was designed to accomodate five feet of settlement and incorporated a 30-mil-thick HDPE liner. We also prepared post-closure maintenance documents.