Scientists were able to strengthen clay soil using electricity
The researchers found that clay soil with poor permeability can be stabilized and compacted using an electric current.
Currently, there are various geochemical methods for improving the mechanical characteristics of the soil. Although they are suitable for a wide range of soil types, they are ineffective for clayey, due to their poor water permeability. However, scientists from the Federal Polytechnic School of Lausanne have found a way to create mineral bridges inside problem soils using electricity.
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The team injected a special biocement into the soil, consisting of carbonate and calcium ions, which carry opposite charges. After that, the anodes and cathodes were immersed in the ground to create an electric field, practically turning the site into a huge battery.
Under the action of the current, the ions moved through a medium with low permeability, where they intersected, mixed together and interacted with soil particles, forming there carbonate minerals that act as links or compounds. Experiments have shown that such a geoelectrochemical system significantly improves the mechanical characteristics and resistance of clay soils.
The researchers hope that their development will help prevent destruction of buildings and save lives during natural disasters.
Recall that recently Russian scientists reported on the invention of an additive for concrete, which allows it to be poured at temperatures below zero without loss of quality.