Summer 2010

Geosynthetics: materials with functional added value

On the basis of their characteristics, geosynthetics have a functional added value. Compared with traditional materials and methods, geosynthetics leave a modest carbon footprint.

The geotextiles, geogrids and geosystems from TenCate Geosynthetics are given a specific coating and finishing, depending on their function and application. Geosynthetics often form part of the overall construction and have a functional added value in this. The most frequent functions are separation (preventing two granular layers becoming mixed with each other), protection (against erosion or damage from rockfall), filtering (preventing destabilization of the ground through discharge of soil and formation of a natural granular filter), asphalt reinforcement (to prevent cracks in carriageways), soil reinforcement (guaranteeing the stability of structures), drainage (removal of water or other liquids) and sealing (preventing contamination ending up in the soil).

Application of TenCate Mirafi®

Geosynthetics are being more expressly involved in the design and specifications. The advantages of using geosynthetics include savings on building materials, a reduction in the thickness of the top layer, the possibility of using local materials and their rapid availability for use, even for unstable soil and sloping ground.

Frequent alternatives to geosynthetics are concrete, rocks and steel, which usually have to be transported over a great distance. This means that they leave a relatively large carbon footprint. Geosynthetics are therefore positioned as sustainable and environmentally friendly systems.

‘Green’ geosynthetics comply with environmental legislation and regulations in the United States relating to building projects and the construction of roads and highways. Here there is an increase demand for sustainable roads and structures, during which less waste is released and which require fewer natural resources and less energy.

Blue fabric (Tecawork Blue 65287)