Performance of reinforced embankments on rate-sensitive soils under working conditions considering effect of reinforcement viscosity
The long-term performance of embankments with creep susceptible geosynthetics as a basal reinforcement layer over rate-sensitive soils is examined. Various factors, including reinforcement type and stiffness, soil viscosity, construction rate, and allowable long-term reinforcement strain, affecting the time-dependent behavior of reinforced embankments are investigated. Increasing the reinforcement stiffness (for a given allowable strain) allowed construction of higher embankments from a stability perspective; however, it also resulted in larger deformations and potential serviceability issues. Lateral toe spreading, maximum settlement, and differential settlement increased with the increasing rate of construction. Reducing the allowable long-term reinforcement strain proved to be an effective means of limiting embankment deformation. The analyses also showed that if the long-term reinforcement strain can be limited to < 5% and combined with the practical rate of construction, the long-term deformations of reinforced embankments can be controlled. (c) 2012 American Society of Civil Engineers.