lime stabilization

lime stabilization

We firmly believe in the proper use of hydrated lime or Quicklime as a method to stabilize your ground for strength if either the subsoil is not a desirable material to build on or if the material your bringing in as a compactable material has to much moisture in it to allow for the compaction to take place.

Hydrated lime will also dry out a muddy construction entrance or just about anything it comes in contact with.

One of the great things about using a lime product is that its not just a temporary fix but instead will actually change the properties of the soil forever.

Below you will find some further reading material on hydrated lime and its uses.

LIME MEETS THE CONSTRUCTION CHALLENGE: Lime is an unparalleled aid in the
modification and stabilization of soil beneath road and similar construction projects. Using lime can
substantially increase the stability, impermeability, and load-bearing capacity of the subgrade. And
lime is a proven solution–witness the more than one million metric tons of lime used annually in the
U.S. for soil modification and stabilization.
LIME AND SOIL MODIFICATION: Lime is an excellent choice for short-term modification of soil
properties. Lime can modify almost all fine-grained soils, but the most dramatic improvement occurs in
clay soils of moderate to high plasticity. Modification occurs because calcium cations supplied by the
hydrated lime replace the cations normally present on the surface of the clay mineral, promoted by the
high pH environment of the lime-water system. Thus, the clay surface mineralogy is altered, producing
the following benefits:
· Plasticity reduction
· Reduction in moisture-holding capacity (drying)
· Swell reduction
· Improved stability
· The ability to construct a solid working platform
These benefits expedite construction and save time and money. (For more information, see NLA’s
factsheet on using lime to dry up mud, at
LIME AND SOIL STABILIZATION: Soil stabilization occurs when lime is added to a reactive soil
to generate long-term strength gain through a pozzolanic reaction. This reaction produces stable
calcium silicate hydrates and calcium aluminate hydrates as the calcium from the lime reacts with the
aluminates and silicates solubilized from the clay. The full-term pozzolanic reaction can continue for a
very long period of time, even decades — as long as enough lime is present and the pH remains high
(above 10). As a result, lime treatment can produce high and long-lasting strength gains. The key to
pozzolanic reactivity and stabilization is a reactive soil, a good mix design protocol, and reliable
construction practices.
Benefits of soil stabilization include:
· Very substantial increases in resilient modulus values (by a factor of 10 or more in many cases)
· Very substantial improvements in shear strength (by a factor of 20 or more in some cases)
· Continued strength gain with time, even after periods of environmental or load damage
(autogenous healing)
· Long-term durability over decades of service even under severe environmental conditions.
These performance benefits translate into short- and long-term economic benefits.
· In the short-term, considering the structural contribution of lime-stabilized layers in pavement
design can create more cost-effective design alternatives.
In addition to stabilization of new materials, lime is an excellent choice for the reclamation of
roadbases. As more and more governmental entities are choosing to reclaim existing roadbases rather
than replace them, this use of lime will become even more important.
Lime stabilization is not difficult to carry out. After proper mix design and testing is performed, inplace
mixing is usually used to add the appropriate amount of lime to soil, mixed to an appropriate
depth. Pulverization and mixing is used to thoroughly combine the lime and soil. For heavy clays,
preliminary mixing may be followed by 24 to 48 hours (or more) of moist curing, followed by final
mixing. For maximum development of strength and durability, proper compaction is necessary.
Proper curing is also important. If sulfates are present at levels greater than 0.3 percent, special
procedures are required.


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