Monday, February 6

1:30 – 3 pm
Alternative Backfill Materials for MSE Structures (organized by AMSE)

Session Chair: Robert A. Gladstone, P.E., Association for Mechanically Stabilized Earth (AMSE)

Mechanically stabilized earth (MSE) structures depend on frictional interaction between reinforcements and reinforced backfill for their internal stability. Therefore, the physical, mechanical and electrochemical properties of the chosen backfill are critical to designing safe structures which will provide a long service life. At sites having weak foundation soils, backfill unit weight may negatively affect external stability. For any project, if naturally occurring backfill satisfying both internal and external stability requirements is not available on site or from an economical haul distance, there are alternative backfill materials which may be considered.

Alternative backfills for MSE structures are typically manmade or reprocessed/recycled from manmade materials. Examples of such materials include low density cellular concrete, foamed glass aggregate, vitrified shale, clay and slate, and recycled concrete. This Special Session will educate attendees about these four alternative MSE backfills, including their physical, mechanical and electrochemical properties, their cost implications, and any special considerations when used to construct MSE structures. Example MSE projects may be mentioned in this session but, for case history presentations, conference attendees should plan to attend the companion Special Session, MSE Structure Case Histories Using Alternative Backfill Materials.

Relevant Physical Properties of Rotary Kiln Produced Expanded Shale, Clay, and Slate Lightweight Aggregate for MSE Applications
Jack Moore, P.E., Arcosa Lightweight

Design and Construction Considerations for MSE Systems with Foamed Glass Aggregate Backfill
Theresa Andrejack Loux Ph.D., P.E., AeroAggregates of North America

Are We Ready to Construct MSE Walls with RCA as Backfill?
Burak Tanyu, Ph.D., George Mason University

Low Density Cellular Concrete as MSE Backfill
Nico Sutmoller, Aerix Industries

3:15 – 4:30 pm
Applications of Fabricated Geosynthetics
(organized by FGI)

PVC Geomembranes in Agricultural Uses
Adolpho Meldau and Jucieli Duarte, Cipatex Group Cerquilho

Carbon Footprint Calculator
Timothy D. Stark, Ph.D., P.E., University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Payment Bases in Liner Projects
Duff Simbeck, Simbeck and Associates, Inc.

Performance Comparison of Evapotranspiration and Engineered Turf Covers
Md Jobair Bin Alam, Ph.D., P.E., M. ASCE, Maalvika Aggarwal, Ram Ray, Ph.D., P.E., M. ASCE, ACUE, Prairie View A&M University

Protection of Geofoam using High Strength, Chemically Resistant Geomembranes
William D. Shehane, P.E. and Tina Oliver, Seaman Corporation; Felon R. Wilson, P.E., Consultant

Case Study: Lake Forest Reservoir Relining & Floating Cover
Brian Fraser, MBA, Layfield Canada; Douglas Hilts, P.E., S.E., Hilts Consulting Group; Robert Emmons, Layfield USA

Tuesday, February 7

9:45 – 11:15 am
MSE Structure Case Histories Using Alternative Backfill Materials
(organized by AMSE)
Session Chair: Robert A. Gladstone, P.E., Association for Mechanically Stabilized Earth (AMSE)

Numerous MSE structures have been built using manmade or reprocessed/recycled materials such as low density cellular concrete, foamed glass aggregate, vitrified shale, clay and slate, and some industrial waste products. These materials are often selected because of their lower unit weights compared to naturally occurring backfills. Reduced unit weight can help address design challenges caused by settlement-prone or otherwise poor foundation soils, but the selected backfill must also have the properties necessary for MSE structure stability and long term performance. Presenters in this Special Session will provide case histories of geosynthetic-reinforced (and one or two steel-reinforced) MSE structures constructed with alternative backfills, including referencing project conditions driving backfill selection and any special construction practices related to use of that backfill. Conference attendees should plan to attend the companion Special Session, Alternative Backfill Materials Applicable to MSE Structures, for more detailed information on several alternative MSE backfills..

Critical Considerations for Using Alternative Backfill Materials
Robert Johnson, P.E., Tensar International Corporation

MSE Wall Experience with Alternative Backfill Materials
Robert Lozano, P.E., The Reinforced Earth Company

Alternative Backfills for MSE Structures
John M. Lostumbo, P.E., Solmax

Lightweight Cellular Concrete Case Histories Utilizing Geosynthetic Reinforcement
Trevor Towery, Elastizell Corp. of America

1:30 – 3 pm
Panel Discussion: How to Write a Good Geomembrane Spec
(organized by FGI)
Moderator: Timothy Stark, PhD, Univeristy of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Panelists: Edward Silva, e Squared Technical Textiles; Ray Peebles, Cooley Group; Neil Nowak; Patrick Elliott, Viaflex

This Panel Discussion will assemble  industry leaders to discuss the importance of writing a good geomembrane specification and not using an old specification that may or may not be for the type of geomembrane intended for the current project. In particular, the panelists will discuss the most important parameters of a geomembrane specification for a particular application, such as, functionality, longevity, and constructability. Some of the important parameters to consider when preparing a specification may include: chemical resistance, ability to accommodate differential settlement, dimensional stability to control wrinkles, ability to factory fabricate large panels to reduce field time and exposure, and seam strengths but properties should be keyed to the application of the geomembrane. For example, if there are concerns about subgrade compaction, specifying a material with higher multiaxial elongation properties may be desirable.  It is also important that engineers understand that most material types can have very different properties and it is important that designers select an appropriate geomembrane to meet project requirements.  This will help avoid confusion or blended specifications. Finally, the importance of specifying relevant and consistent properties, e.g., long-term durability in terms of plasticizer retention instead of OIT values for a PVC geomembrane. Afterwards, the panelists will answer attendees questions about writing a good geomembrane specification.

3:15 – 4:45 pm
Recent Advances in MSE Walls Analysis, Design and Performance

Effect of Spread Footing Loads on Stability of Geosynthetic-Reinforced Retaining Walls
S. Mustapha Rahmaninezhad, Ph.D., A.M.ASCE, University of Texas Rio Grande Valley, Terracon Consulting Inc.; Thang Pham, Ph.D., P.E., A.M.ASCE and Thuy Vu, Ph.D., University of Texas Rio Grande Valley; Ashley Alanis and Alfonso A. Soto, P.E., D.GE., Terracon Consulting Inc.

Migrating From the Simplified Method to the Stiffness Method for Internal Stability Design of MSE Walls
Richard J. Bathurst, Ph.D., Royal Military College of Canada; Tony M. Allen, WSDOT (retired)

New Closed-Form Analytical Solutions for Total Reinforcement Force in a GRS Retaining Wall at the Limit State
Patrick J. Fox, Ph.D., P.E., D.GE, F.ASCE, Pennsylvania State University

3:15 – 4:45 pm
Exposed Geosynthetic Performance (organized by GSI)

Evaluation of the UV Exposure of Polymeric Geomembranes Using Geographic and Climate Data
David Beaumier and Ali Fazli, SAGEOS – CTT Group

Engineered Turf Landfill Closure: How Long Will It Last?
Bryan Scholl, Ph.D., P.E. and Ming Zhu, Ph.D., P.E., Watershed Geosynthetics; Zehong Yuan, Ph.D., P.E., SGI Testing Services

Exposed NPNW GT Exposed Npnw GT Performance at a Large Surface Impoundment For Nearly One Year
Stephan Fourmont, Afitex-Texel Geosynthetics Inc.; Silda Rivas, Alkegen; George Koerner, Ph.D., P.E., CQA, Geosynthetic Institute (GSI)

Exposed Geomembrane Cover Performance at Polk County Landfill in Florida
George A. Reinhart, III, Ph.D., P.E., Jones Edmunds & Associates, Inc.; George Koerner, Ph.D., P.E., CQA, Geosynthetic Institute (GSI)

3:15 – 4:45 pm
Panel Discussion: Improved Pavement Design – A Different Coversation
(organized by FHWA)

Moderator: Silas Nichols, FHWA
Panelists: John Donahue, Missouri Department of Transportation, Jennifer Albert – Federal Highway Administration, Raul Velesquez – Minnesota Department of Transportation

This panel of pavements engineers will discuss the current state of pavement design and construction from their perspectives in state departments of transportation (DOT) and the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), and will address common barriers and opportunities for increased use of geosynthetics in pavements.

Wednesday, February 8

8 – 9:30 am
Fabricated Geosynthetics for Water Retention Projects
(organized by FGI)

Best Practices for Design and Installation of Geosynthetic Floating Covers
Brian Fraser, MBA, Layfield USA; Douglas Hilts, P.E., S.E., Hilts Consulting Group

Operation and Maintenance Guideline for Water Reservoirs
Duff Simbeck, B.S., Simbeck and Associates; Ronald Frobel, P.E., R.K. Frobel & Associates Consulting Engineers; Timothy Stark, Ph.D., P.E., University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign; Prabeen Joshi, Ph.D., P.Eng., Arcadis Canada; Matthew Kemnitz, Leak Location Services, Inc.

Chambers Dam Reservoir Remediation: Case Study
Patrick Elliott, Viaflex

New Developments in PVC-EIAs for Potable Water Containment Applications
J.P. Lens, Ph.D., Lance Reed and Ray Peebles, Cooley Group

Netherlands Motorway Underpass Case Study
Dick van Regteren and Charlie Angenant, Genap

9:45 – 11:15 am
Importance of Operation and Maintanence Manuals
(organized by FGI)
Panelists: Duff Simbeck, Simbeck Liners, Ron Frobel, R.K. Frobel & Associates, Glen Toepfer, CQA Solutions, Matthew Kemnitz, Leak Location Services, Inc.

This Panel Discussion will assemble four (4) industry leaders to discuss the advantages and disadvantages of giving owners and operators an Operation and Maintenance (O&M) manual for their installed geosynthetics. The panel discussion will commence with a description and discussion of the first FGI O&M Manual for water reservoirs and the checklist included to facilitate periodic inspection. The second FGI O&M Manual for a floating cover system over water reservoirs is under preparation and will be outlined. The FGI thinks an O&M plan should be standard practice for each project to obtain longer service life and meeting project expectations. The panelists will discuss the many significant problems that can be avoided by periodic inspections and minor maintenance, e.g., removal of vegetation on or under the geosynthetics and careful use of equipment around the geosynthetics, such as lawnmowers. As an exposed liner ages, sample coupons of geomembranes can also be removed for testing purposes to help owners determine the remaining life of the geomembrane.  Afterwards, the panelists will answer attendees questions about O&M activities and discuss the benefits of including sample coupons that can be removed for testing to assist owners with determining remaining service of the geomembrane.