The Assessment of Freeze-Thaw Damage in Cement Stabilised Soils

by R. J. Kettle, Aston Univ, Birmingham, England,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Research on Transportation Facilities in Cold Regions


Whilst the ASTM Freeze-thaw test was not originally conceived as a means for classifying the frost resistance of cement stabilised soils it has become accepted for this purpose, with the performance assessed in terms of weight loss. However, the structural behaviour of these materials in pavement layers is largely controlled by tensile strength and elastic modulus. It, therefore, seemed desirable to assess the effects of freeze-thaw cycling on these parameters and to link these observations to the commonly used test criteria. A total of 8 soils were studied, ranging from a graded stone to silty clays of low plasticity. These were subjected to cement additions of 5 to 15 percent, so that some 25 different mixtures were tested during the investigation. The exposure to freezing was achieved by subjecting specimens to the ASTM freeze-thaw test. Prior to these tests, measurements were made of the tensile strength and resilient modulus. Indeed, with this latter test it was possible to test selected samples throughout the freeze-thaw cycling and so monitor the progressive changes. With all the samples, the resilient modulus in the frozen state was significantly greater than that in the subsequent thawing period. These large changes in the modulus could produce severe distress during the Spring Thaw and it is recommended that this phenomenon should be assessed by substituting these parameters in pavement models.

Subject Headings: Soil cement | Frozen soils | Soil stabilization | Soil classification | Construction materials | Parameters (statistics) | Clays | Resilient modulus

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