Evaluating the Compatibility of PVC Coated Geogrid to be Used in MSE Structures that Contain Recycled Concrete Aggregate

The use of recycled concrete aggregate (RCA) has increased over the years because of low production costs, the high price of available land for disposal, and the increasing trend for sustainable construction. For several applications such as transportation infrastructure including roads, highways, and airport runways, RCA is becoming a fundamental source. This research is aimed to evaluate the behavior of PVC-coated polyester geogrid when RCA is used as the backfill material for a Mechanically Stabilized Earth (MSE) Wall. Through a comprehensive laboratory program, the MSE wall backfill will be modeled to include double-layer geogrid reinforcement with custom-made cylindrical columns with both RCA and virgin aggregate. In this test setup, which includes wetting and drying cycles that represent the real situation, the pH value of the influent and effluent solution will be measured periodically. In experiments to be carried out at different temperatures, DI water and RCA leachate will be used as influents, and from time to time geogrid samples will be exhumed and tested for their tensile strength. The test results obtained at relatively high temperatures according to the field conditions will be extrapolated with the Arrhenius model to values that represent the real situation at relatively lower temperatures. Thus, the unsaturated condition results obtained by wetting/drying cycles will be compared with the current immersion test results which include continuously constant pH leachate.