Preventing the Underground Movement of Methane from Sanitary Landfills

by Ralph Stone, (F.ASCE), Pres.; Ralph Stone and Co., Inc., Los Angeles, Calif.,

Serial Information: Civil Engineering—ASCE, 1978, Vol. 48, Issue 1, Pg. 51-53

Document Type: Feature article


Alternatives for controlling methane gas migration from sanitary landfills are evaluated. The conditions leading to explosions and fires from concentrations of methane are discussed. Advantages and disadvantages of impermeable barriers, forced ventilation systems and natural ventilation systems are given. Alternative control systems are evaluated for effectiveness (the main consideration), maintainability and controllability. A forced induction system is considered safest, with trench/membrane barrier systems effective for controlling small amounts of methane. Other alternatives may not provide all the needed protection and safety. Trench/membrane systems are the easiest to maintain. Forced ventilation systems are the easiest to control.

Subject Headings: Methane | Landfills

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