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Geotextiles are permeable fabrics which, when used in association with soil, have the ability to

separate, filter, reinforce, protect, or drain. Typically made from polypropylene or polyester,
geotextile fabrics come in three basic forms: woven (looks like mail bag sacking), needle
punched (looks like felt), or heat bonded (looks like ironed felt).

Geotextile composites have been introduced and products such as geogrids and meshes have
been developed. Overall, these materials are referred to as geosynthetics and each
configuration—-geonets, geogrids and others—-can yield benefits in geotechnical and
environmental engineering design.

 1 History
 2 Applications
 3 Design considerations
 4 See also
 5 References
 6 External links

Geotextiles were originally intended to be an alternative to granular soil filters. Thus the original,
and still sometimes used, term for geotextiles is filter fabrics. Work originally began in the 1950s
with R.J. Barrett using geotextiles behind precast concrete seawalls, under precast concrete
erosion control blocks, beneath large stone riprap, and in other erosion control situations.[1] He
used different styles of woven monofilamentt fabrics, all characterized by a relatively high
percentage open area (varying from 6 to 30%). He discussed the need for both adequate
permeability and soil retention, along with adequate fabric strength and proper elongation and set
the tone for geotextile use in filtration situations.


A silt fence on a construction site.

Geotextiles and related products have many applications and currently support many civil
engineering applications including roads, airfields, railroads, embankments, retaining structures,
reservoirs, canals, dams, bank protection, coastal engineering and construction site silt fences.
Usually geotextiles are placed at the tension surface to strengthen the soil. Geotextiles are also
used for sand dune armoring to protect upland coastal property from storm surge, wave action
and flooding. A large sand-filled container (SFC) within the dune system prevents storm erosion
from proceeding beyond the SFC. Using a sloped unit rather than a single tube eliminates
damaging scour.

Erosion control manuals comment on the effectiveness of sloped, stepped shapes in mitigating
shoreline erosion damage from storms. Geotextile sand-filled units provide a "soft" armoring
solution for upland property protection. Geotextiles are used as matting to stabilize flow in
stream channels and swales.[2][3]

Geotextiles can improve soil strength at a lower cost than conventional soil nailing.[citation needed] In
addition, geotextiles allow planting on steep slopes, further securing the slope.

Geotextiles have been used to protect the fossil hominid footprints of Laetoli in Tanzania from
erosion, rain, and tree roots.[4]

In building demolition, geotextile fabrics in combination with steel wire fencing can contain
explosive debris.[5]

Coir (coconut fiber) geotextiles are a popular solution for erosion control, slope stabilization and
bioengineering, due to the fabric's substantial mechanical strength.[2]:App. I.E Coir geotextiles last
approximately 3 to 5 years depending on the fabric weight. The product degrades into humus,
enriching the soil.[6]

Design considerations
To use geotextiles to reinforce a steep slope, two components have to be calculated:

 the tension required for equilibrium

 the appropriate layout of the geotextile reinforcement.

Wikimedia Commons has media related to: Geosynthetics

See also
 Hard landscape materials
 Sediment control

1. ^ Barrett, R. J., "Use of Plastic Filters in Coastal Structures," Proceedings from the 16th
International Conference Coastal Engineers, Tokyo, September 1966, pp. 1048-1067
2. ^ a b Dane County Erosion Control and Stormwater Management Manual (Report).
Madison, WI. 2007. Retrieved 2010-02-09.
3. ^ Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (2003). Massachusetts Erosion
and Sediment Control Guidelines for Urban and Suburban Areas (Report). Boston, MA.
pp. 73-74.
4. ^ Renfrew, Colin and Paul Bahn, Archaeology. 4th ed. New York: Thames 2004. ISBN
978-0-500-28441-4.[page needed]
5. ^ WGBH Boston (1996-12). "Interview with Stacey Loizeaux". NOVA Online. Public
Broadcasting Service. Retrieved 2009-04-29. "Other preparatory operations involve
covering/wrapping the columns first with chain link fences and then with geotextile
fabric, which is very puncture resistant and has a very high tensile strength. It allows the
concrete to move, but it keeps the concrete from flying. The chain link catches the bigger
material and the fabric catches the smaller material from flying up and out."
6. ^ Richards, Davi (2006-06-02). "Coir is sustainable alternative to peat moss in the
garden". Garden Hints. Corvallis, OR: Oregon State University Extension Service.
Retrieved 2013-03-06.

 Woolson, Eric (2003-06-30). "Geosynthetics in Stormwater Management". Stormwater

(Santa Barbara, CA: Forester Media).
 "Types of Geosynthetic Materials". Stormwater. 2003-06-30.

External links
 Alberta Government site on Geotechnical and Erosion Control[dead link]


 v
 t
 e

Topics in geotechnical engineering

 Clay
 Silt
 Sand
 Gravel
 Peat
 Loam
 Loess

 Hydraulic conductivity
Soil properties  Water content
 Void ratio
 Bulk density
 Thixotropy
 Reynolds' dilatancy
 Angle of repose
 Cohesion
 Porosity
 Permeability
 Specific storage

 Effective stress
 Pore water pressure
 Shear strength
 Overburden pressure
 Consolidation
Soil mechanics
 Soil compaction
 Soil classification
 Shear wave
 Lateral earth pressure

 Cone penetration test

 Standard penetration test
Geotechnical  Exploration geophysics
investigation  Monitoring well
 Borehole

 Atterberg limits
 California bearing ratio
 Direct shear test
 Hydrometer
 Proctor compaction test
 R-value
 Sieve analysis
 Triaxial shear test
 Hydraulic conductivity tests
 Water content tests

 Crosshole sonic logging

Field tests  Nuclear densometer test

 Bearing capacity
 Shallow foundation
Foundations  Deep foundation
 Dynamic load testing
 Pile integrity test
 Wave equation analysis
 Statnamic load test

 Mechanically stabilized earth

 Soil nailing
 Tieback
Retaining walls
 Gabion
 Slurry wall

 Mass wasting
 Landslide
Slope stability
 Slope stability analysis

 Soil liquefaction
 Response spectrum
Earthquakes  Seismic hazard
 Ground-structure interaction

 Geotextile
 Geomembranes
Geosynthetics  Geosynthetic clay liner
 Cellular confinement

Instrumentation  Deformation monitoring

for Stability  Automated Deformation Monitoring