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Front. Earth Sci.

2011, 5(2): 162169


DOI 10.1007/s11707-011-0166-1

RESEARCH ARTICLE

Inuence of natural pozzolana and lime additives on the


temporal variation of soil compaction and shear strength
Khelifa HARICHANE ()1, Mohamed GHRICI1, Hani MISSOUM2
1 Civil Engineering Department, Chlef University, Chlef 02000, Algeria
2 Civil Engineering Department, Mostaganem University, Mostaganem 27000, Algeria

Higher Education Press and Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2011

Abstract Soil stabilization has been practiced for quite


some time by adding mixtures, such as cement, lime and
y ash. The additives of lime (L), natural pozzolana (NP)
or a combination of both were investigated here on the
impact on the temporal variation of geotechnical characteristics of two cohesive soils. Lime and natural
pozzolana were added at the content of 08% and 0
20%, respectively. The soil specimens were cured for 1, 7,
28 and 90 days and then tested for shear strength. Our data
show that a combination of lime with natural pozzolana
causes the increase in the maximum dry density but the
decrease in the optimum moisture content in the gray soil,
and vice verse in the red soil. The shear stress of both
cohesive soils stabilized with lime or with the combination
of lime and natural pozzolana was found to increase with
time. The cohesion and the internal friction angle in limeadded samples were demonstrated to increase with time.
The combination of lime with natural pozzolana exhibits a
signicant effect on the enhancement of the cohesion and
the internal friction angle at later stages. The lime-natural
pozzolana combination appears to produce higher shear
parameters than lime or natural pozzolana used alone.
Keywords cohesive soil, lime (L), natural pozzolana
(NP), compaction, shear strength

Introduction

Civil engineering projects located in areas with weak soils


are one of the most common problems in the world. The
conventional method of soil stabilization is to remove the
weak soil and replace with a stronger material. The high
cost of this method has driven researchers to look for
Received February 9, 2011; accepted March 15, 2011
E-mail: kharichane@yahoo.fr

alternative methods, and one of these methods is the


process of soil stabilization.
Soil stabilization is a technique introduced many years
ago with the main purpose to render the soils capable of
meeting the requirements of the specic engineering
projects (Kolias et al., 2005). In addition, when the soils
at a site are poor or when they have undesirable property
making them unsuitable for use in a geotechnical projects,
they may have to be stabilized. In recent years, a variety of
scientic techniques have been introduced for soil
stabilization (Rogers et al., 1997). The techniques of soil
stabilization often use the additives as cementing agents
including cement, lime or industrial by-products, and
extensive studies have been carried out on the stabilization
of soils using various additives such as lime and cement
(Basha et al., 2005).
The potential for using industrial by-products to stabilize
clayey soils is promising (Al Rawas and Goosen, 2006).
These by-products and their combination with cement and
lime have been used as soil stabilizers such as limestone
(Okagbue and Yakubu, 2000), y ash (Prabakar et al.,
2004; Al Rawas et al., 2005; Goswami and Singh, 2005;
Parsons and Kneebone, 2005; Sezer et al., 2006; Hossain et
al., 2007; MuAzu, 2007), rice husk ash (Rahman, 1986;
Muntohar and Hantoro, 2000; Basha et al., 2003;
Muntohar, 2005; Senol et al., 2006; Al Hassan and
Mustapha, 2007; Choobbasti et al., 2010), silica fume
(Bagherpour and Choobbasti, 2003; Kalkan, 2009) and
cement kiln dust (Miller and Azad, 2000).
However, limited researches have been conducted on the
additive of natural pozzolana (NP) in soil stabilization.
Hossain et al. (2007) utilized volcanic ash (VA) from
natural resources of Papua New Guinea as an additive and
investigated the resulted compaction, unconned compressive strength and durability, but not the shear strength
behavior. Natural pozzolana is found abundantly in
extensive areas of Beni-Saf quarry in the West of Algeria
(Ghrici et al., 2007). The use of natural pozzolana and its

Khelifa HARICHANE et al. Inuence of pozzolana and lime on the variation of shear strength

combination with lime as soil additives need to be


investigated. As the soil is a good source of alumina, the
effects of lime treatment can be enhanced to a great extent
if the apparent shortage of silica can be adequately
supplemented by the addition of natural pozzolana which
is enriched in reactive silica. However, the literature
indicates minimal studies on the stabilization of cohesive
soils in Algeria.This paper presents the results of the effect
of the curing time on the shear strength of two Algerian
cohesive soils, stabilized with the combination of lime and
natural pozzolana.

Experimental investigation

2.1

Materials used

The rst soil used in this study was obtained from an


embankment project site, and the second soil was obtained
from a highway project site both near Chelif town in the
West of Algeria. Previous soil investigations carried out at
the sites indicated the presence of weak clays. These weak
clays were encountered at a depth of about 4 to 5 m. The
disturbed soil was excavated, placed in plastic bags, and
transported to the laboratory for preparation and testing.
Laboratory tests were carried out to classify each type of
soil. The engineering properties of clayey soils are
presented in Table 1.

Table 2

Chemical composition of natural pozzolana

Chemical composition

46.4

Al2O3

17.5

Fe2O3

9.69

CaO

9.90

MgO

2.42

CaO free

0.83

SO3
Na2O

3.30

K2O

1.51

TiO2

2.10

P2O3

0.80

Loss of ignition

5.34

Table 3

Physical and chemical properties of lime used here

Chemical name

Physical appearance

Soil 1

Soil 2

Dry white powder

CaO

> 83.3

MgO

< 0.5

Fe2O3

<2

Al2O3

< 1.5

SiO2

< 2.5
< 0.5

Na2O

Physical characteristics of the soils

Basic characteristics

Natural pozzolana/%

SiO2

SO3

Table 1

163

0.40.5

CO2

<5
< 10

Color

Gray

Red

CaCO3

Depth/m

4m

5m

Specic gravity

Natural water content/%

32.87

13.77

Over 90 m/%

< 10

Specic gravity

2.71

2.84

Over 630 m/%

85

97.5

Insoluble material/%

Passing 80 m sieve/%
Liquid limit/%

84.8

47.79

Plastic limit/%

32.78

23.23

Plasticity index/%

52.02

24.56

CH

CL

28.3

15.3

Classication (USCS)
Optimum water content/%
3

Maximum dry density/(kN$m )

13.8

16.9

Unconned compressive strength/kPa

55.6

222.5

The NP used in this investigation was collected


from Beni-Saf in the West of Algeria. The NP was
ground in a laboratory mill to the specic surface area of
420 m2/kg. The chemical composition of NP is presented
in Table 2. The lime (L) used was a commercially available
lime typically used for construction purposes. The
chemical and physical properties of the lime are presented
in Table 3.

Bulk density/(g$L )

2.2

<1
600900

Laboratory tests of compaction and shear strength

A series of laboratory tests of compaction and shear


strength were conducted on the two clayey soils selected.
Extensive combinations of natural pozzolana with lime
were used to stabilize the two soils. The NP content was 0,
10% and 20%, and the lime content was 0, 4% and 8%.
A total of 18 combinations based on soil 1 and soil 2
with single and mixed modes of stabilizers were studied
(Table 4).
Proctor standard compaction test according to ASTM
D698-00 (2000) was applied to determine the maximum
dry density (MDD) and the optimum moisture content
(OMC) of the soils. The soil mixtures, with and without
additives, wait for 1 h to reach thorough equilibrium prior
to compaction. The rst series of compaction tests were

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Front. Earth Sci. 2011, 5(2): 162169

Table 4

Stabilizer combination scheme for stabilized soils

Designation

Sample mixture/%
Soil

NP

P0L0

100

P0L4

96

P0L8

92

P10L0

90

10

P20L0

80

20

P10L4

86

10

P20L4

76

20

P10L8

82

10

P20L8

72

20

aimed at determining the compaction properties of the


unstabilized soils, and then carried out to determine the
proctor compaction properties of the clay upon stabilization with varying amounts of lime and natural pozzolana.
The direct shear tests were performed following ASTM
D6528-00 (2000), and were conducted on treated and
untreated samples compacted at maximum dry density and
optimum moisture content. Since the specimens were not
saturated, excessive pore water pressure would not be
expected in them. The direct shear test was unconsolidated
and the load was applied at a rate of 1 mm/min. The normal
stress was chosen to be 50, 100 and 200 kPa for all the
specimens. Six specimens from each mixture were
prepared for each curing period. To avoid excessive
moisture loss, the specimens were wrapped up with a
polyane lm after demolding. The specimens were kept in
the laboratory at the temperature of 25C and the relative
humidity of 50% until the test time (1, 7, 28 and 90 days).

Results and discussion

3.1

Compaction characteristics

The compaction test was to determine the effect of


stabilizers on MDD and OMC. The MDD and OMC of
soils mixed with lime, natural pozzolana or their
combinations are reported in Figs. 1 and 2.
The results show that the OMC increases but the MDD
decreases with the increase of lime addition. Similar
behavior was observed before in lime stabilized clayey
soils (Ola, 1977; Rahman, 1986; George et al., 1992; Bell,
1996; Gay and Schad, 2000; Hossain et al., 2007;
Manasseh and Olufemi, 2008). The following reasons
could explain this behavior; 1) the lime added causes the
aggregation of the particles to occupy larger spaces and
hence alters the effective grading of the soils, 2) the
specic gravity of lime is generally lower than that of the
soils tested, and 3) the pozzolanic reaction between the
clay present in the soils and the lime is responsible for the

Fig. 1 Compaction characteristics of the gray soil under the


different combinations of additives

Fig. 2 Compaction characteristics of the red soil under the


different combinations of additives

increase in OMC.
Figures 1 and 2 show the effect of the NP content on
both OMC and MDD. The OMC decreases and the MDD
increases as the NP content increases from 0 to 20%. The
increase in MDD is an indicator of the improvement of soil
properties. Hossain et al. (2007) observed an increase in
OMC and a decrease in MDD when the content of volcanic
ash added increases from 0 to 20%. This is different from
our study in NP.
The decrease in OMC observed in our study could
apparently have resulted from the lower afnity of NP for
water. In addition, the increase in MDD is probably
attributed to the relatively higher specic gravity of the NP.
The addition of a combination of lime with natural
pozzolana to the gray soil decreases the OMC and
increases the MDD. But for the red soil, the combination
of lime with natural pozzolana increases the OMC and
reduces the MDD, particularly at 20%NP content. Several
researchers (Ola, 1977; Rahman, 1986; Basha et al., 2005)
found that the change in MDD occurs due to the
differences in both the particles size and specic gravity
between the soil and stabilizers.
Recently, a power function model shown below (Eq. (1))
was developed to represent the optimum density-moisture
relationship (Di Matteo et al., 2009), on the basis of 30 soil
samples collected in central Italy and 41 soils described in
the literature, all of which are tested in modied proctor.

Khelifa HARICHANE et al. Inuence of pozzolana and lime on the variation of shear strength

MDD 35635 OMC 0:2564 :

165

(1)

The confrontation of our experimental results to


those acquired by the model (Eq. (1)) was presented in
Fig. 3. According to Fig. 3, we could note a good
agreement between our results and those predicted by the
model developed by Di Matteo et al. (2009). It appears that
our soil stabilized samples follow the same behavior as
those investigated by Di Matteo et al. (2009). Also, it
should be noted that the slight overestimate of the
model compared to our experimental results is explained
by the modied proctor compaction used by Di Matteo
et al. (2009).
3.2
3.2.1

Shear strength
Temporal variation of the shear stress

The effect of L, NP and their combinations on the temporal


variation of the maximum shear stress of the gray and red

Fig. 3 Maximum dry density (MDD) versus optimum moisture


content (OMC) for soils tested

soils was shown in Figs. 4 and 5, respectively.


The shear stress of both cohesive soils tested increases

Fig. 4 Shear stress produced under normal stress of gray soil in different curing time. (a) 1 day; (b) 7 days; (c) 28 days; (d) 90 days

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Front. Earth Sci. 2011, 5(2): 162169

Fig. 5

Shear stress produced under normal stress of red soil in different curing time. (a) 1 day; (b) 7 days; (c) 28 days; (d) 90 days

with the curing time. The addition of lime has a signicant


effect on the shear stress, particularly beyond 28 days, and
in the samples containing 8% lime for both gray and red
soils tested.The addition of natural pozzolana alone has a
negligible effect on the temporal variation of the shear
stress in gray soil, but leads to a marginal increase in the
shear stress at later stages (90 days) in the red soil,
In the samples stabilized with the combination of lime
and natural pozzolana, a considerable increase in the shear
stress was observed beyond 7 days and particularly at
later stages. In both soils, the combination of 20% NP
and 8% L exhibits a high increase in the shear stress
beyond 28 days. This trend was particularly noticeable in
the red soil.
3.2.2

Temporal variation of shear parameters

The effect of L, NP and their combinations on the temporal


variation of the shear parameters, cohesion and internal
friction angle of the gray and red soils was shown in

Figs. 6 and 7, respectively. In slope stability analysis,


the maximum shear strength is generally of primary
importance. For this reason only the shear parameters
using the maximum shear stresses were calculated here.
The temporal variation of the cohesion of the gray and
red soils was shown in Figs. 6(a) and 7(a). The addition of
lime has a signicant effect on the temporal variation of the
cohesion. A considerable increase in cohesion was noticed
at later stages and in the samples containing 8% lime.
Similar behavior was found by Gay and Schad (2000).
This behavior is probably due to the self-hardening effect
related to the lime. Ola (1978) considered the increase in
cohesion with the lime content, to be due to the bonding of
particles to form larger aggregates so that the soil behaves
as a coarse-grained, strongly bonded particulate material.
Others (Lees et al., 1982; Bell, 1989) explained this
behavior by the cementation and pozzolanic reactions
which occur over time.
The addition of natural pozzolana alone has a marginal
effect on the cohesion with increased curing time. This

Khelifa HARICHANE et al. Inuence of pozzolana and lime on the variation of shear strength

167

Fig. 6 Temporal variation of shear strength characteristics in the gray soil. (a) Cohesion; (b) friction angle

Fig. 7 Temporal variation of shear strength characteristics in the red soil. (a) Cohesion; (b) friction angle

effect may be slightly pronounced in the gray soil at 90


days. In comparison, however, a considerable increase in
cohesion was found at later stages in the samples stabilized
with the combination of lime with natural pozzolana.
In both soils, the combination of 20% NP with 8% L
exhibits a high increase in the cohesion beyond 28 days.
This trend is particularly noticeable in the gray soil.
It can be seen from Figs. 6(b) and 7(b) that in both
stabilized soils, the internal friction angle increases with
time as the lime content increases. However, in the gray
soil there is a considerable increase in the internal friction
angle beyond 28 days. Similar trend was found by Sezer et
al. (2006). The latter used very high lime y ash, and they
concluded that this behavior is probably due to the fact that
the internal friction angle of the y ash is more than that of
the soil.
On the other hand, the addition of natural pozzolana

alone has a marginal effect on the internal friction angle


with the curing time. In contrast, in the samples stabilized
with the combination of lime and natural pozzolana, there
is a signicant increase in the internal friction angle at later
stages. However, in the gray soil, the combination of
20% NP with 8% L has a negligible effect on the internal
friction angle independent of the curing period.
The improvement in the cohesion and internal friction
angle values may be due to the pozzolanic activity and selfcementitious characteristics of the mixed lime-natural
pozzolana. This behavior is more pronounced beyond 28
days.

Conclusions

This paper presented the effect of curing time on the shear

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Front. Earth Sci. 2011, 5(2): 162169

strength of cohesive soils stabilized with lime, natural


pozzolana or a combination of both. On the basis of the test
results from 18 stabilized soil mixtures, the following
conclusions can be drawn.
The maximum dry density of lime-stabilized soils
decreases with the increase in the lime content, in contrast
with the natural pozzolana-stabilized soils. A combination
of lime with natural pozzolana causes the maximum dry
density increased in the gray soil but decreased in the red
soil. The optimum moisture content of lime-stabilized soils
increases with the increase in the lime content, in contrast
with pozzolana-stabilized soils. A combination of lime
with natural pozzolana causes the optimum moisture
content decreased in the gray soil but increased in the
red soil.
The shear stress of both cohesive soils stabilized with
lime or with the combination of lime and natural pozzolana
was found to increase with cure time. A considerable
increase was particularly observed at later stages.
There is a considerable increase in the cohesion and the
internal friction angle in the samples containing lime with
the increase of curing period. The addition of natural
pozzolana results in a marginal effect on the cohesion and
the internal friction angle with the increase in the curing
period. The combination of lime with natural pozzolana
exhibits a signicant effect on the enhancement of the
cohesion and the internal friction angle at later stages. In
both soils and particularly in the gray soil, the combination
of 20%NP and 8%L exhibits a high increase in the
cohesion beyond 28 days but has a negligible effect on the
internal friction angle independent of the curing period.
The results indicate the combination of lime with natural
pozzolana produces higher shear parameters than lime or
natural pozzolana used alone.

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