Publication Abstract

Proceedings of the 45th Annual Conference on Deep Foundations, 2020 - ONLINE , (DFI)

Design and Specification Considerations for Environmental Cutoff Walls
Daniel Ruffing, PE, M.ASCE, Jeffrey Evans, PhD, PE, D.GE, F.ASCE²

Vertical cutoff, or barrier, walls are an integral part of environmental site remediation efforts. Vertical barriers are commonly deployed to limit the influx of clean ground water and/or to control the off-site migration of contaminated groundwater. The level of detailed design consideration devoted to the vertical cutoff wall component varies widely from project to project and generally decreases with decreasing size and complexity. For those projects receiving minimal design effort, conservative design decisions can lead to unnecessary costs or unanticipated conflicts between the various design considerations. In this paper, the authors discuss several important design and construction aspects of vertical cutoff walls requiring particularly careful consideration during the design phase of the project. These design and construction considerations include the need for and extent of excavation for a key, project target hydraulic conductivity, the use of statistical allowances in the specifications, filter press testing, sand content of in-trench slurry, cleaning of the backfill slope, measurement of stress and strain, the additional of slag in cement-bentonite cutoff walls, and longevity of cutoff walls.

 article #3704; publication #1073 (AM-2020)