Suitability of Boulder Marl and Marsh Clay as Sealing Substrates for Landfill Capping Systems—A Practical Comparison

The effects of compaction on soil shrinkage behavior need to be considered for engineering long-term durable mineral liners of landfill capping systems. For this purpose, a new three-dimensional laser scanning device was coupled with a mathematical-empirical model to simultaneously determine the shrinkage behavior of a boulder marl (bm) and a marsh clay (mc). Therefore, both materials were precompacted in 200 soil cores (100 cm 3 ) on the basis of the Proctor test results with five different degrees of compaction (bm1-bm5; mc1-mc5). Thus, the shrinkage behavior, intensity, and tendency were determined during a standardized drying experiment. The volume shrinkage index was used to describe the pore size dependent shrinkage tendency and was classified as high to very high (11.3–17.7%) for the marsh clay and medium (5.3–9.2%) for the boulder marl. Additionally, only the boulder marl (bm2), compacted up to 88% of Proctor density, could be installed as landfill bottom liner in drier locations if the local matric potentials did not exceed the previously highest observed drying range (i.e. values below −300 hPa), to avoid crack formation and generation.


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