Conklin - WinterSoilCement
Providing soil cementing successfully in Canada poses many challenges. One of the biggest is the short work season due to the harsh northern winters. Many parts of Canada are actually within the permafrost zone and those that aren’t experience winter for 4-6 months. So not only do soil cement projects need to be done in the limited spring/summer/fall seasons, they need to be robust enough to survive multiple freeze/thaw cycles. Traditional soil cementing knowledge states that certain soil types and working temperature ranges have severe limitations.
Over the first three seasons of providing RoadCem based soil cementing services in Canada, CARES Ltd. experienced results which appeared to disprove the traditional expectations. For example, sites with high water tables and consisting of frost susceptible silts did NOT suffer frost damage even when subjected to multiple freeze/thaw cycles under heavy traffic. And when doing late fall stabilizations, RoadCem based soil cement retained heat even when hit by cold snaps with temperatures below minus 10 Celsius!
In light of this positive field experience the founder of CARES Ltd. began to experiment with cold weather soil cementing. With initial laboratory and back yard success CARES Ltd. conducted a pilot study in December 2009. A 6500 square metre site in Northern Alberta was offered by an existing client along with supply of the required water. The native soil was clayey-silt with frost penetration greater than 1.25 metres. Average daytime temperatures were -30 degrees Celsius with overnight lows nearing -40.
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