The Potential of Using Rubberchips as a Soft Clay Stabilizer Enhancing Agent

  •  Ho Meei Hoan    
  •  Chan Chee Ming    


Soft clays generally display extremely low yield stresses, high compressibility, low strength, low permeability and consequently low quality for construction. Soil stabilization like soil-cement mixing can be effectively adopted to improve the strength and deformation characteristics of the soft clays. To incorporate a ‘green’ element in the existing stabilization technique, rubber chips derived from waste rubber tyres were used together with cement to stabilized kaolin in the laboratory, exploring the feasibility of the innovative stabilizer. A series of laboratory tests were carried out to study the fundamental mechanical and chemical properties of the cement-rubber chip stabilized kaolin. The mechanical properties examined included bender element and unconfined compressive strength, while the chemical properties included pH values, conductivity and the percentage of oxide concentration. The overall test results indicated that cement is effective in stabilizing the soils, where significant improvement of unconfined compressive strength (qu) and P- and S- wave velocities (vp and vs) were observed. Increasing the percentage of rubber chips alone did not contribute much to strength improvement of the kaolin specimens but are able to increase the percentage of axial strain at failure compared to those specimens without rubber chips. Also, curing time was found to have a significant positive influence on qu, vp and vs.

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