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Proceedings of Indian Geotechnical Conference

December 22-24,2013, Roorkee

EFFECT OF COIR WASTE ON THE GEOTECHNICAL PROPERTIES OF


FLYASH

P.S.Deepak, Asst. Professor, IES College of Engineering, Chitilappilly, Thrissur,


K.Balan, Professor, Dept. of Civil Engineering, College of Engineering, Thiruvananthapuram,
K.Niranjana, Post graduate student, IES College of Engineering, Chitilappilly, Thrissur ,

ABSTRACT: For the development of any country, a satisfactory mode of transport and communication is
indispensable. This can be achieved through an economically viable transportation system. The quality of subgrade
governs the pavement design. Practically it is not possible to have good subgrade always. During the last few
decades research has been conducted on various aspects of low volume roads resulting in innovative and
unconventional approaches of road construction. . Flyash is an important industrial by-product that comes from the
combustion of coal. In our country, only a small percentage is used for the construction of technical projects, while
the rest is stockpiled. Coir waste is a by-product left after extracting fiber from coconut husks. Being dumped in
bulk it causes environmental hazards and other menace. The present investigation assesses the usefulness of coir
waste as an admixture in flyash, especially for construction of rural roads.

INTRODUCTION fraction[1]. Various studies have indicated that the


The transportation infrastructure system is one of mixing of polypropylene fiber can increase the
the main investments every modern society must strength of soils to make them suitable for subbase
make for their economic and social development. construction. It is true for fly ash also [5].CBR
In India, a special drive has been taken at the value of flyash increases on adding fibers. Thus
beginning of the new millennium to improve the thickness of the pavement could be considerably
road and highway systems in the country. It is reduced upon addition of fibers and fly ash [6].
well-known that naturally occurring aggregates Pith is another waste by-product left after
used for road construction are depleting rapidly. extracting fiber from coconut husks. . Particle size
They are extracted from natural rocks and possess of pith varied between 0.098 to 0.925mm [2]. More
certain engineering properties. Quite often these over coir pith being dumped in bulk causes
materials are not available locally in sufficient environmental hazards and other menace.
quantities and are to be brought from far off places The present investigation leads to study if two
which increases the transportation cost. It increases waste materials mixed together can be used in rural
the project cost. During the last few decades road construction as sub-grade/sub-base material.
research has been conducted on various aspects of No major studies are conducted on the influence of
low volume roads resulting in innovative and the coir waste in the engineering behavior of
unconventional approaches of road construction. flyash. The main objective of the present
Fly ash management causes serious environmental investigation is to assess the usefulness of coir
problem for developing countries and its proper waste as an admixture in flyash, especially for
utilization with a missionary zeal is required to pavement construction. Hence the compaction
save the mother earth on many counts The civil characteristics and CBR values of flyash mixed
engineering use of flyash is already tried mainly in with different percentage of coir waste has been
highways, embankments but with limitations. studied.
Specific gravity is one of the important physical
properties needed for the use of coal ashes for
geotechnical and other applications[4]. Coal ashes
are predominantly silt sized with some sand-size

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P.S.Deepak, K.Balan, & K.Niranjana

EXPERIMENTAL PROGRAMME above mentioned studies for the base soil mix in
Flyash used for the study was collected from this study. Short fibers are added in different
Hindusthan Newsprint kottayam,Kerala. Coir percentages to the above mentioned mix and
waste was collected from a defibering unit in compaction characteristics and CBR values were
Kerala. found out.
The physical properties of coir flyash and coir
waste are shown in table 1 and table 2 respectively. Table 2 Properties of coir waste
The coir waste used in this study was in a soaked Properties of Coir Values
state and it was then sun dried to reduce the water Waste
content to 0%. The coir pith was obtained by
Specific gravity 0.38
sieving the coir waste through 4.75 mm sieve, by
this process medium to large fibres along with Coefficient of
1.17
gravel sized coir waste are all removed. The sieved curvature
pith consisted of baby fibres which were difficult Coefficient of
4.28
to separate manually. The coir pith was brown in uniformity
colour and was light in weight. It has a property of
imbibing water and swells 600 times more than its Effective size (mm) 0.5
weight. The portion of coir waste retained on Percentage Gravel
4.75mm sieve is short fiber [3]. 6
sized particles (%)
Percentage sand sized
Table 1 Properties of flyash 93
particles (%)
Description Values Percentage fine sized 1
particles (%)
.
Specific gravity (G) 2.14 Chemical properties of flyash were determined
from Center for earth science studies Trivandrum
Liquid limit (%) 48 and the results are given in table 3.
Plastic limit (%) Non plastic
Table 3 Chemical properties of flyash
Shrinkage limit (%) Not obtained Components Class F fly ash (%)
Maximum dry 11.6 SiO2 49.410
3 TiO2 1.420
density (kN/m )
Al2O3 23.670
Optimum moisture 31.6 MnO 0.069
content (%) Fe2O3 6.885
Unsoaked CBR (%) 3 MgO 2.803
Na2O 0.426
Soaked CBR (%) 0.56 K2O 0.864
The samples were prepared by mixing coir pith SO3 0.350
with flyash in 0%, 0.5%, 0.75%, 1%, 1.5%, 2%, P2O5 0.367
2% 3% and 4% by weight of flyash. LOI 6.444
Standard Proctor Compaction test was conducted
for each mix to find out maximum dry density and
optimum moisture content.California Bearing
Ratio tests, both soaked and unsoaked were also
conducted.
Optimum coir pith content which gives better
compaction and CBR results was selected from the

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Effect of coir waste on the geotechnical properties of flyash

RESULTS AND DISCUSSIONS


Effect of coir waste on California bearing ratio
Effect of coir pith on dry density and optimum of flyash
moisture content of flyash The variation of unsoaked and soaked CBR value
with increase in coir pith content of flyash is
It was observed that dry density decreases and shown in Figures 3 and 4 respectively. It is seen
OMC increases with increase in coir pith content. that there is an increase in CBR value at lower pith
The variation of dry density and OMC with coir content and about 2% decrease in CBR value
waste content is shown in Figures 1 and 2 thereafter.
respectively.
10

9
12.0
MAXIMUM DRY DENSITY (kN/m )
3

UNSOAKED CBR(%)
11.5
7

11.0 6

10.5 5

4
10.0
3
9.5
2
0 1 2 3 4
0 1 2 3 4
PERCENTAGE PITH(%)
PERCENTAGE PITH(%)

Fig. 1 Variation in Maximum dry density with Fig. 3 Variation in unsoaked CBR with addition of
addition of pith pith
In all cases, optimum moisture content of fly ash
increases because of the absorption of water by
coir pith. The decrease in dry density can be
attributed to the low density of coir pith. 0.72

0.70
OPTIMUM MOISTURE CONTENT(%)

44 0.68
SOAKED CBR(%)

42 0.66

40 0.64

38 0.62

36 0.60

34
0.58

0.56
32
0.54
30
0 1 2 3 4 0.0 0.2 0.4 0.6 0.8 1.0 1.2 1.4 1.6

PERCENTAGE PITH(%) PERCENTAGE PITH(%)

Fig. 2 Variation in optimum moisture content with Fig. 4 Variation in soaked CBR with addition of
addition of pith pith

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P.S.Deepak, K.Balan, & K.Niranjana

In all cases the CBR value of flyash-pith From fig.5 it is clear that as the percentage of short
combination was higher than that of flyash. fiber increases, there is decrease in dry density and
With an increase in the pith content there are the maximum decrease is by 7%. The decrease in
sufficient pith particles to attain cohesive attraction dry density on addition of short fiber can be
between the pith particles and also the presence of attributed to the low density of fibre.
baby fibers (the amount of which is higher in
higher grams of pith) provides reinforcement
effect. The decrease in CBR value can be due to 46.5

OPTIMUM MOISTURE CONTENT(%)


the cushioning effect of pith and the higher
46.0
replacement of flyash by pith.
The optimum value of pith content in flyash is 45.5
found to be 0.75% and the corresponding 45.0
un-soaked and soaked CBR values are 9.3% and
44.5
0.7% respectively.
44.0

Effect of short fibers on MDD and OMC of 43.5


optimum flyash-pith combination.
43.0
Short fibers are the portions retained while sieving
coir waste on 4.75mm sieve. To understand the 42.5
0.0 0.5 1.0 1.5 2.0 2.5 3.0 3.5 4.0
effect of short fibers on the compaction
PERCENTAGE SHORT FIBER(%)
characteristics of fly ash coir pith mix, short fibers
were added in different percentages. Optimum coir Fig.6 Variation in MDD with the addition of short
pith content which gives better compaction and fiber
CBR results was selected from the above
mentioned studies for the base soil mix in this From figure 6 it is clear that the optimum moisture
study. Accordingly fly ash with 0.75% coir pith content of flyash-pith combination increases when
was selected as the base soil mix and to which short fibers are added. There was about 2%
short fiber was added at varying percentages. increase in moisture content on adding short fibers.
The variation in maximum dry density and This may be attributed to the absorption of water
optimum moisture content with the addition of by short fibers.
short fibers are shown in figure 5 and 6
respectively.

10.8 9.5
MAXIMUM DRY DENSITY(kN/m )
3

10.7
9.0
10.6
UNSOAKED CBR(%)

8.5
10.5
8.0
10.4
7.5
10.3
7.0
10.2

10.1
6.5

10.0 6.0

9.9 5.5
0.0 0.5 1.0 1.5 2.0 2.5 3.0 3.5 4.0 0.0 0.5 1.0 1.5 2.0 2.5 3.0 3.5 4.0
PERCENTAGE SHORT FIBER(%) PERCENTAGE SHORT FIBER(%)

Fig.5 Variation in MDD with the addition of short Fig.7 Variation in unsoaked CBR with the addition
fiber of short fibers

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Effect of coir waste on the geotechnical properties of flyash

Effect of short fibres on CBR values optimum When coir pith with baby fibre is added to fly ash,
flyash-pith mixture it has been found that 0.75% of coir pith will give
When short fibers were added, there was a good compaction parameters and CBR values.
decrease in unsoaked CBR values of flyash pith However soaked CBR values of such combination
mixture. The decrease was within 1%-3%.figure 7 is less than 1%. When pith was added to fly ash a
and 8 shows the variation in unsoaked and soaked maximum unsoaked CBR of 9.3% was obtained at
CBR values respectively with the addition of short 0.75% pith
fibers.
When short fibers were added to optimum fly ash-
But there is an increase in the values of soaked pith combination, at 3% short fiber a maximum
CBR with the addition of short fibers as shown in unsoaked CBR value of 8% was obtained. Hence
figure 8. both the above combinations can be considered
ideal for subgrade in rural roads.
In soaked CBR test the wetted fibers provide
reinforcement to the fly ash pith mix by its tensile It is clear from the results of soaked CBR tests that
strength, but in unsoaked CBR test, since proper the flyah-pith combination as well as flyash-pith-
bond in not developed between the fibres and short fiber combination cannot with stand adverse
flyash pith mix fibres fail to provide reinforcement situations like heavy rainfall. So alternate ground
to the specimen. improvement techniques must be adopted to
improve the soaked CBR value of mixture and
thereby it can be used in the construction of rural
roads.
1.6

1.4 REFERENCES
SOAKED CBR (%)

1.2 1. Leonards, G and Bailey, B. (1982).


Pulverized coal ash as structural fill. J.
1.0
Geotech. Engng Div., 108, 517531.
2. Neethi, M. (2006). Study of physical
0.8
properties of coir pith. International Journal
0.6 of Green Energy., 24(6), 397-406.
3. Nisha, K. K, Thushara, T., Balan, K., and
0.4 Jayasree, P.K. (2013). Studies on the
0.0 0.5 1.0 1.5 2.0 2.5 3.0 3.5 4.0
engineering behavior of coir waste mixed soil.
PERCENTAGE SHORT FIBER(%) Geosynthetics, Long Beach, California, 163-
169.
4. Pandian, N.S., Sridharan, A. (1998). Studies
Fig. 8 Variation in soaked CBR with the addition
of the specific gravity of some Indian coal
of short fibers
ashes." Journal of Testing and Evaluation,
44(3), 177-186.
CONCLUSIONS 5. Praveen, K., Singh, S.P. (2008). Fiber-
reinforced fly ash subbases in rural roads.
Two waste materials, coir pith at varying Journal of Transportation Engineering.,
percentage were added to fly ash in order to assess 134(4), 171-180.
the improvement in geotechnical properties. Coir 6. Rao ,V.K. (2012). Effect of fiber on fly-ash
pith sieved through 4.75 mm sieve to separate short stabilized sub grade layer thickness.
fibres of coir and coir pith with baby fibre. International Journal of Engineering and
Technology., 3(4), 140-147.

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