Development of Environmentally Friendly Stabilization Methods for Transport Infrastructure Based on Geopolymers
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In recent years, the use of geopolymers has received much attention as an eco-friendly and sustainable alternative to conventional chemical additives since they can be processed at room temperatures from aqueous solutions of waste materials (e.g. fly ash) or abounded natural sources (e.g. clay). The objective of the proposed research is to develop an environmental and eco-friendly solution using Geopolymers for stabilizing bases and subgrades. Research tasks include the material aspects and pavement engineering performance aspects of the treated soils and bases. The effects of Geopolymer composition, dosage rates, curing time and temperature on overall properties of Geopolymer stabilized base and subgrade materials will be studied in order to optimize the use of Geopolymers derived from local waste and natural materials. Both material characterization studies related to micro to macro behavioral changes have to be evaluated as a part of this research. A comprehensive study of processing-structure relationship including structural characterization Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM), X-ray Diffraction (XRD), Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR), Differential Scanning Calorimetry (DSC), Water Absorption Index (WAI), thermal expansion, and others have to be linked to engineering soil properties including shear strength, resilient moduli, volume change and durability characteristics. During the implementation phase, sustainable, resiliency and life cycle analysis of these treatments will be evaluated. This study would provide major benefits in the design of durable and distress free pavement infrastructure in problematic soil conditions that prevail in Texas and other regional states.