Soil stabilisation is any process which improves the physical properties of soil, such as increasing shear strength, bearing capacity etc. which can be done by use of controlled compaction or addition of suitable admixtures like cement, lime and waste materials like fly ash, phosphogypsum etc. The cost of introducing these additives has also increased in recent years which opened the door widely for the development of other kinds of soil additives such as plastics, bamboo etc. This new technique of soil stabilisation can be effectively used to meet the challenges of society, to reduce the quantities of waste, producing useful material from non-useful waste materials.
Use of plastic products such as polythene bags, bottles etc. is increasing day by day leading to various environmental concerns. Therefore the disposal of the plastic wastes without causing any ecological hazards has become a real challenge. Thus using plastic bottles as a soil stabiliser is an economical utilization since there is scarcity of good quality soil for embankments. This project involves the detailed study on the possible use of waste plastic bottles for soil stabilisation. The analysis was done by conducting plate load tests on soil reinforced with layers of plastic bottles filled with sand and bottles cut to halves placed at middle and one- third positions of tank. The comparison of test results showed that cut bottles placed at middle position were the most efficient in increasing strength of soil. The optimum percentage of plastic strips in soil was found out by California Bearing Ratio Test and using this percentage of plastic, plate load test was also performed. The size and content of strips of waste plastic bottles have significant effect on the enhancement of strength of the soil.
For many years, road engineers have used additives such as lime, cement and cement kiln dust to improve the qualities of readily available local soils. Laboratory and field performance tests have confirmed that the addition of such additives can increase the strength and stability of such soils. However, the cost of introducing these additives has also increased in recent years. This has opened the door widely for the development and introduction of other kinds of soil additives such as plastics, bamboo, liquid enzyme soil stabilizers etc.
Soil stabilisation using raw plastic bottles is an alternative method for the improvement of subgrade soil of pavement. It can significantly enhance the properties of the soil used in the construction of road infrastructure. Results include a better and longer lasting road with increased loading capacity and reduced soil permeability. This new technique of soil stabilisation can be effectively used to meet the challenges of society, to reduce the quantities of waste, producing useful material from non-useful waste materials that lead to the foundation of sustainable society. It can be effectively used in strengthening the soil for road embankments and in preparing a suitable base for the upper pavement structure. Since it increases the bearing capacity of soil considerably, the land use can be increased. It can lower the road construction and maintenance costs while increasing the overall quality of its structure and surface.
The promise that soil stabilisation technology can actually improve the mechanical qualities of local road soil so that stronger, more durable roads can be built has prompted national road ministries around the world to conduct extensive testing to verify that this new technology is truly cost-effective. The result is that this new advance in soil stabilisation technology is increasingly being used in both constructing and improving/rehabilitating unsurfaced and paved roads worldwide.