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Geomechanics and Engineering
  Volume 10, Number 5, May 2016 , pages 677-687

Performance of fly ash stabilized clay reinforced with human hair fiber
L. Abi Rekha, B. Keerthana and H. Ameerlal

    Industrialization and urbanization are the two phenomena that are going relentless all over the world. The consequence of this economic success has been a massive increase in waste on one hand and increasing demand for suitable sites for construction on the other. Owing to the surplus raw materials and energy requirement needed for manufacturing synthetic fibers, applications of waste fibers for reinforcing soils evidenced to offer economic and environmental benefits. The main objective of the proposed work is to explore the possibilities of improving the strength of soil using fly ash waste as an admixture and Human Hair Fiber (HHF) as reinforcement such that they can be used for construction of embankments and land reclamation projects. The effect of fiber content on soil — fly ash mixture was observed through a series of laboratory tests such as compaction tests, CBR and unconfined compression tests. From the stress - strain curves, it was observed that the UCC strength for the optimised soil — flyash mixture reinforced with 0.75% human hair fibers is nearly 2.85 times higher than that of the untreated soil. Further, it has been noticed that there is about 7.73 times increase in CBR for the reinforced soil compared to untreated soil. This drastic increase in strength may be due to the fact that HHF offer more pull-out resistance which makes the fibers act like a bridge to prevent further cracking and thereby it improves the toughness which in turn prevent the brittle failure of soil-flyash specimen. Hence, the test results reveal that the inclusion of randomly distributed HHF in soil significantly improves the engineering properties of soil and can be effectively utilized in pavements. SEM analysis explained the change of microstructures and the formation of hydration products that offered increase in strength and it was found to be in accordance with strength tests.
Key Words
    clay; ground improvement; fly ash; randomly distributed fiber; soil reinforcement
School of Civil Engineering, SASTRA University, Thanjavur, Tamil Nadu 613401, India.

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