Stabilization has been limited to lateritic soils of

Stabilization of
Laterite soils:

 A Literature Review

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Soil materials are a vital element and
considered to be one of the important parameters in all civil engineering
designs. In most parts of the tropical areas of the world, lateritic soils are
extensively encountered. Clay is an important component of lateritic soils,
especially when assessed for civil engineering purposes (Townsend,
“Laterite” from the Latin word “Later” meaning
brick can also be used to stabilize the soil. It is a soil layer that is rich
in iron oxide, reddish-brown in colour and mostly developed in humid
subtropical and tropical climate (The Editors of Encyclopædia Britannica, 1998).

( Adebisi, Adeyemi, Oluwafemi, & Songca, 2013) Worked on some index properties and
crushing strength of three south western Nigeria lateritic clay deposits with
the aim of seeing how the materials could be used for bricks. The result of
their findings showed that firing increases the strength tremendously. Research
on this type of soil has been tested in other countries to help stabilize the
soil aggregates. Therefore, it is also possible in using this type of soil when
making bricks. The following review of literature confirms a laterite soil can
stabilize the soil when making bricks as supported by the related review
articles and applied in the construction industry.


Importance of
stabilization on Laterite Soil

purpose of stabilizing a soil
is to alter its physical properties, increase its strength and increase its
durability in order to provide a satisfactory foundation material. The
admixtures most commonly used today in road construction throughout the world
are cement, lime, asphalt and sand. Cement appears to be most common additive
used to date in Africa and South America Lime has been used as well, but not as
commonly as cement. The use of asphalt has been limited to lateritic soils of a
sandy nature. Stabilization by admixture of sand has been investigated.


Lateritic Soils using different stabilizers

There are many ways in stabilizing the laterite soil. It
responds to cement stabilization and, in some cases, lime stabilization (Townsend,
The techniques of soil
stabilization can be categorized into a number of ways such as consolidation,
vertical drains, vibration, surcharge load, admixtures, grouting and
reinforcement and other methods (Ravichandran et al., 2016). ( Ayeni, 2016) Noted the addition of limestone will
improved the shear strength of soil. However, while considering potential uses
of soil samples added with lime, the effects of wetting cannot be
overemphasized. He shows that when added with up to 6%
of limestone ash there is an increase in California bearing ratio but according
to  ( Ilori & Udo, 2015) it is possible  by adding 5% of lime materials.  (Marathe, Kumar , & Avinash, 2015) Suggests the same
trend can also  be seen for soil with 3%
of cement. While in the study ( Ilori & Udo, 2015) laterites soil
having properties of  A-7-6(8) was
qualified and suitable to use as a subgrade, sub base and base material in a
highway construction when added with saw dust ash in various percentage.
 For road construction, it recommends 7% cement for base materials, 5%
lime for sub-base materials and 18% rice husk ash for sub-base materials (Rahman,
1996). However, there was few who focused
on applying laterites soil on bricks. Soil data access can be used to reduce
the Plasticity Index values of expansive soil, which are often a problem in
road and building engineering construction.


has been a certain amount of controversy between those advocating stabilization
with cement and those advocating stabilization with lime. This is true in
temperate climates involving both residual and transported soils. It is also
true in tropical climates where the soils are mostly residual. Those that
believe only in cement stabilization state that there is little in tropical
residual soils with which the lime can react, and unless there are clay-lime
reactions, there is no benefit in adding lime. Those who believe in lime
stabilization state that most clayey materials are more effectively stabilized
with lime than cement. There are also those who believe in a combination of
both lime and cement for tropical red soils. Studies have found many highly
plastic soils which do not increase in strength upon the addition of lime but
which always show a reduction in plasticity. The soils become more friable and
easier to mix creating ideal soils for cement stabilization­­­.


Index, Compressibility and Shear strength in laterite soil

There are lot of research about
lateritic soil but did not focused so much on the plasticity index and compressibility
of the material (BADMUS, 2010) .The Unconfined
compressive strength (UCS) test results showed that there was decrease in UCS
strength of soil sample as the curing period increases (Marathe, Kumar , & Avinash, 2015) and when cement is
added to soil sample the UCS strength increases tremendously. IJIRSET explained
as the time progresses, formation of dicalcium silicates takes place due to
hydration of cement because presence of dicalcium silicates is responsible for
strength at later stages.

Horpibulsuka, Suddeepong, Chamket, & Chinkulkijniwat, 2013) Procedure which includes field
compaction control and the material selection was recommended.


Uses of Laterites in Engineering

ecological and engineering perspectives, Lateritic soil can be used for
landfill sites.  (Horpibulsuk,
Based from his data that has been tested, it can also be used for road
embankment and rural and highway pavement. ( Ayeni, 2016) The concept of chemical stabilisation
of Laterite soil using different percentages of limestone ash have also been
evaluated for road construction. The Relations between geotechnical properties
of soils help the researchers in designing different civil engineering
structures. It was also qualified and suitable to use as subgrade, sub base and
base material in a highway construction when added with saw dust ash in various
percentage ( Ilori & Udo, 2015). ( Ayeni, 2016) Noted the addition of limestone will
improved the shear strength of soil.



In this literature review, most of the
studies on properties of lateritic soils do not pay attention so much on the
moisture content, the wet and dry-densities and its porosity. Furthermore, Different
researchers indicate its respective materials for chemical stabilization and
use various percentages that will be compatible to improve the shear strength,
CBR and other requirements needed in their research.


for future research:

Mostly of the lateritic soil were on
compressed earth blocks (CEB) and few are on bricks.

if we use lateritic soil that we see in our backyard in making bricks?

the properties of this soil no different?

what percentage will be needed to obtain the desired result?

the ordinary bricks the same as laterite bricks?



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