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The Soilcrete® –
Jet Grouting

Brochure 67- 03 E


3 History

4 Soilcrete® –
Jet Grouting Process

6 Process Variations

7 Construction Forms

8 Construction Sequences

10 Stabilisation

11 Sealing

12 Addresses

Soilcrete – History

With the aquisition of a licence in

1979 for the Jet Grouting process
and the introduction into Germany
under the trademark “Soilcrete”,
Keller Grundbau GmbH entered
into a new field of soil stabilisation.

Small scale underpinning works were the

beginnings of an unusual way of jet grouting.
To reach todays state of the art, additional
development was necessary.

• The process was modified to suit differ-

ent types of soils.
• The application was developed step by
step to provide solutions to a variety of
• Equipment was developed and improved.
• A general licence for Soilcrete was
issued by the Institute of Construction
Technic in 1986.
Computer design and
This brochure reports on the state of the optimisation of compli-
Soilcrete technique today. cated Soilcrete elements
by Keller‘s own software


Soilcrete – Jet Grouting Process

The name “Soilcrete” derives from

the concept “soil” to “concrete” a
form of soil with a concrete consist-
ence, a description that characterises
the type of soil stabilisation.

The jet grouting process

The jet grouting process “Soilcrete” is recog-
nised as a cement soil stabilisation. With the
aid of high pressure cutting jets of water or
cement suspension having a nozzle exit
velocity ≥ 100 m/sec eventually air- shrouded
the soil around the borehole is eroded.

Application limits for grouting techniques

Clay Silt Sand Gravel Coubles

Soilcrete® - Jet Grouting

Synthetic Solutions 80
Sodium Silicate
Solutions [lv]
Silicate Gel [hv] 60
Ultra fine Cement

Passing by weight [%]

Cement Suspension 40

lv = low viscous
hv = high viscous

economical 0
0,002 0,006 0,02 0,06 0,2 0,6 2,0 6,0 20 60
uneconomical Grain size [mmØ]

The eroded soil is rearranged and mixed Applications

with the cement suspension. The soil-
In contrast with the conventional ground
cement mix is partly flushed out to the top
stabilisation methods Soilcrete may be used
of the borehole through the annular space
for stabilisation and sealing of all kind of soil
between the jet grouting rods and the bore-
ranging from loose sediments to clay.
hole. Different geometrical configurations of
This applies also for non homogeneous soil
Soilcrete elements can be produced. The
formations and changing soil layers, including
erosion distance of the jet varies according
organic material. Soft rock formations have
to the soil type to be treated, the kind of
also been treated by Keller Grundbau GmbH
Soilcrete process and the jetting fluid being
– for example sandstone with weak grain
used, and may reach up to 2.5 meter.


The Soilcrete – properties

Soilcrete acts in the ground according to the
specification either as a stabilisation or as a
sealing structure. A combination of both
properties is increasingly required.
The compressive strength of Soilcrete
ranges from 2 to 25 N/mm 2 and is deter-
mined by the cement content and the re-
maining portion of the soil in the Soilcrete Soilcrete sealing
mass. mixtures tested
The sealing effect of Soilcrete against water in a laboratory
ingress is achieved by selecting a suitable
grout suspension and if necessary by the
addition of Bentonite. The type and quantity
of the injected grout material as well as the
kind and volume of the remaining soil parti-
Soilcrete pump and
cles in the Soilcrete mass guiding the sealing
control station

Compressive strength of Soilcrete Development of Soilcrete-strength

100 silt sand gravel Compressive strength in % of the final strength

Passing by [weight %]

100 non-cohesive
cohesive soil
0,002 0,06 2,0 60 0 7 14 21 28 42
Grain size [ mmØ ] Setting time [days]

Type of soil silt sand gravel

Compressive ≤5 ≤ 10 < 25

Depending on the nature of soils, Soilcrete

cut-offs are able to reduce the coefficient of
Soilcrete cubatures
permeability by several decimal powers.
forming a firm con-
High quality requirements in respect of the
tact with any kind
degree of sealing effect necessitate extensive
of foundation forms
production efforts. For many applications
both the strengthening and sealing character-
istics of the Soilcrete elements are used. The
selected suspensions need to be composited


Soilcrete – Process Variations

Soilcrete is produced in three differ-
ent ways. The method to be used is
determined according to the prevail-
ing soil conditions, the geometrical
form and the required quality of the
Soilcrete elements.

Grout Backflow Soilcrete S

(Single direct process) operates with a grout
jet of min. 100 m/sec. exit velocity for simul-
taneous cutting and mixing of the soil with-
Grout jet out an air schroud.
The Soilcrete S process is used for small to
medium sized jet grout columns.

The triple Soilcrete Air Backflow Soilcrete D

rods provide sepa- Grout (Double direct process) operates with a
rate flows of air,
grout jet of min. 100 m/sec exit velocity for
water and grout to Air shrouded simultaneous cutting and mixing of the soil.
the jet nozzle holder grout jet To increase the erosion capability and the
range of the grout jet, air shrouding by
means of shaped air jet nozzle is used.
The drilling bit is The D process is mainly used for panel walls,
located below the underpinning and sealing slabs.
jet nozzle holder.
During drilling the
suspension is re-
leased through the
drilling bit.

Air Backflow Soilcrete T

(Triple separation process) erodes the
soil with an air shrouded water jet of min.
Air shrouded 100 m/sec exit velocity. Grout is injected
water jet simultaneously through an additional nozzle
located below the water jet nozzle. The
Grout jet grout pump pressure ranges above 15 bar.
A variation of this process operates without
air shrouding of the water jet.
The T process is used for underpinning
works, cut off walls and sealing slabs.


Soilcrete – Construction Forms

The basic geometrical form of Soil-

crete elements is created through
One sided movements of the drill rods:
• Pulling of the drill rods without rota- Interlinked bodies –
A constructed from
tion resulting in panels – if several
jet nozzles are used multiple panels uniform elements
may be produced.
Twin sided
• Pulling and swivelling create seg-
• Pulling and rotating create complete

Soilcrete – Basic forms

The Soilcrete basic forms may be arranged Sealing slabs
Column Lamella
and combined in any way to form each type
A - Quarter Column of element.
B - Half Column
C - Complete Column

Panel walls

Box walls
Exposed testfield with several Soilcrete disks Exposed Soilcrete elements of an
for a sealing slab underpinning wall in sandy soils

Interlinked Soilcrete elements

Column walls

Deep foundation
Panel wall with sealing slab Underpinning elements


Soilcrete – Construction Sequences

Soilcrete site installations consist of storage containers, silos and a compact

mixing and pumping unit. Several high pressure hose connections and control
cable lines connect the pumping unit with the Soilcrete drilling rig at the instal-
lation point. The mast length of the rig varies from 2.00 m in cellars or shafts
and up to 35 m in open areas.
The borepoints are normally located in small trenches equipped with sludge
pumps. From there the excess material, water-cement- soil mixture is pumped
to setting ponds or tanks.

Air Water Bentonite

To backflow

1 Drilling 2 Jetting 3 Grouting

Drill rods equipped with jet The disolution of the grain For all Soilcrete variations ce-
nozzle holder and drill bit are texture with a powerful fluid ment suspension is injected
used to drill the jet grouting jet starts at the lower end of under pressure simultaneously
hole down to the required the Soilcrete element. The ex- with the erosion of the soil.
depth. Normally the jet grout cess water soil cement mix- The turbulences caused by the
mixture is used as drill flush- ture is removed to the surface jetting technique results in the
ing to stabilize the borehole through the annular space uniform mixing of the grout
Small drilling rigs during the drilling operation. between drill rod and bore- with the soil within the treat-
manufactured by In masonry and concrete, spe- hole wall. The pre - selected ment zone.
Keller provide ac- cial drilling bits are used. production parameters are
cess to confined Until the grout in the Soilcrete
constantly monitored. elements starts setting hydro-
working places
static pressure in the borehole
is kept by backfilling grout into
the hole from time to time.


Process Monitoring
Up to 12 different parameters for the con- Operation panel
struction of Soilcrete elements may be re- and basic station
corded and used by the engineer-in-charge of recording unit
of supervision and control. type M4

pump Backflow recycling

Process: Soilcrete-D-Process (1.0.0)

Inventar: 130481 Site: 6814225
Lot: 0 Point: 19 Ref. No.: 3
12.06.95 Time: 16:287:30 Interval: 2 sek
Important construct-
ion parameters may
Time Depth Progress Drilling Grout Flow Revo-
[sec] [m ] [m/min] pressure
[l/min] lutions
be electronically re-
0 5 10 20 0 20 0 100 200 0 250 500 0 250 500 0 50 100 corded








4 Extension 8000

Soilcrete elements of each form

Total time: 149.63 min Max. Depth: 6.3 m Length column: 6.1 m
may be constructed fresh on
fresh as well as fresh against
firm and combined and con- Optical and manual checking as well as
nected in a variety of ways. controls and tests according to the require-
ments laid down in the license issued by the
The working sequence follows
Institute of Construction Technik ensure
the technical requirements and
quality workmanship.
the conditions of the structure
to be treated.

Core recovery from

Soilcrete elements


Soilcrete – Applications

Soilcrete for Stabilisation

Underpinning work for adjacent construction pits is one of the main tasks of soil
stabilisation – followed by foundation modifications and restoration.
Soilcrete opens new ways for tunnel constructions in loose soils.

Underpinning Tunnel protection

Underpinning by means of low de- Soilcrete tunnel protection is
formation gravity walls sometimes mainly constructed in loose soils
also used as a ground water sea- below or close to endangered
page barrier, may be safely con- structures, sometimes with the
structed even from confined aim of reducing the groundwater
working areas. ingress into the tunnel excavation.

Foundation restoration Soilcrete - Horizontal

Historical buildings may be endan- Horizontal Soilcrete columns pro-
gered in the event of settlements tect tunnel drives in loose soil for-
occurring. Soilcrete provides a safe mations. They are constructed
foundation with the maximum from working faces and are hori-
structural protection. zontal or slightly inclined.

Foundation modification Shaft supports

Changes in utilisations or modifica- Shafts with intersecting Soilcrete
tions of buildings often require an columns are constructed if a vibra-
enlargement or alteration of the tion free installation is required
foundation. Soilcrete is an economi- and/or the shafts enter into ground
cal and flexible solution for this water bearing strata.

Deep foundation Earthpressure relief

Soilcrete is used for new founda- Structures exposed to earth pres-
tions which require special care in sures, such as historical walls, abut-
view of nearby existing structures ments, avalanche galleries, steep
such as historical buildings or slopes protections or quay walls
computer centres. may be relieved by the addition of
or connection to a statically calcu-
lated backup Soilcrete body.


Soilcrete for Sealing

Building pit walls constructed of deformation and ground water resistant Soilcrete
underpinning elements, combined with low permeable Soilcrete slabs enables the
execution of deep building pits without the need for large scale
ground water lowering.
Environmental safe mineral binder materials are used for Soilcrete.

Panel walls Vault slabs

Soilcrete panel walls to cut off For small building pits and shafts
ground water are used below with reduced width Soilcrete slabs
roads and buildings, for crossing are used as prevention against the
pipelines and to subdivide building water uplift pressure, reducing the
pits into different excavation sec- required depth of slabs normally
tions. According to the sealing re- required to resist the hydrostatic
quirements single or multiple pan- uplift.
els may be constructed.

Column walls Sealing cover

In the event of higher mechanical The Soilcrete cover protects the
strain by shearforce, danger of un- groundwater below buildings
dermining or of a high imperme- against affects from construction
ability requirements, cut off walls activities and old toxic waste de-
of intersecting Soilcrete columns posits.
may be constructed.

Dam sealing Joint sealing

Soilcrete may be used to repair For sealing of joints between piles,
dam cores or enlarge cut-off walls sheet piles or other construction
in or below dams. parts in the ground the Soilcrete
wing-jet is applied.

Sealing slabs Groundwater exits

Soilcrete sealing slabs are con- Sealing walls are often used as
structed by means of overlapping temporary ground water barriers.
columns within an uplift proof The reinstatement of the perme-
depth. The sealing slabs may be ability may be reached using the
connected to any kind of vertical Soilcrete process to wash out the
sealing systems. binder material from predeter-
mined sections.

Keller Grundbau GmbH
International Geotechnical Contractors ·

Head Office and Overseas Division
P.O. Box 10 06 64
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Saudi Arabia
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GENCO · Geotechnical Engineering Contractor Ltd.
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