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Bioengineering Technology of Securing of Slopes


Securing and Re-cultivation of Slopes Using Natural Binding Materials (Bioengineering Technology)

Tech Area / Field

  • BIO-OTH/Other/Biotechnology
  • OBS-GEO/Geology/Other Basic Sciences

3 Approved without Funding

Registration date

Leading Institute
Georgian Technical University, Georgia, Tbilisi


  • Freiberg Institute of Environmental Protection, Germany, Freiberg\nNortheastern Illinois University, USA, IL, Chicago

Project summary

The purpose of the Project is to develop the bioengineering technique of stabilization and re-cultivation of slopes for using in natural conditions of different climatic zones. The Project envisages application of natural binding materials (NBM), which are ecologically absolutely safe.

The other purpose of the project is to develop the technique of decreasing spoil banks' washing out and the possibility of evacuation and transportation of heavy metals to long distance from a quarry and contamination of environment, which is attained by formation of grass covering on the slopes of spoil banks.

Special model investigations, carried out under laboratory conditions at Georgian Technical University, have shown that by using some natural binding materials for re-cultivation and stabilization of erosive slopes may be achieved. The thickness of grass cover therewith may be easily regulated.

On the basis of laboratory investigations a pilot experiment has been carried out in Kazbegi district. The experiment showed that the method is much more effective than the one, used in the same place by the World Fund of Nature Preservation (WWF) and by the Society of Technical Collaboration of Germany (GTZ ).

It should be noted that the idea of application of binding materials for slope's consolidation is not novel and investigations in this direction were and are carried out, but all the methods under development are based either on utilization of artificial materials, which are not ecologically safe, or on utilization of expensive biotextile materials, such as fiber of coconut palm and jute (Dinger Francoise, "Protection de talus et fosses de forte pente partoile de jute avant vegetalisation," "Actes des rencontres 95 geotextiles geomembranes", "Vegetalisation des espaces degrades," Decembre, 1997).

The compounds of sugar, nitrogen and phosphorus are also used ("Supplement to Methodical Instruction", "Ecolandscape, Russia).

Comparison of our method with the developments mentioned above shows, that the advantage of our method consists in the following:

1. The procedure is not time-consuming;
2. The used compound consists of natural ecologically safe components;
3. The method is cheap, simple and not laborious.

In Georgia intensive exploitation of ore deposits has been carried out for many years both by underground and open mine-workings, on account of what the territory of the country is considerably polluted by mining wastes, which in the form of voluminous dumps always accompany exploitation.

Covering of dumps sides with grass cover by the proposed method creates optimal relations between infiltration and a surface stream and limits penetration of water deep into the side. It leads to dramatic decrease of dumps' washability, evacuation of heavy metals and other elements, and to total consolidation of dumps as well.

Application of the method under-development is also possible to such an important and urgent field for Georgia as construction of oil pipe. The proposed method makes it possible to create grass cover within the 5-meter width zone above the oil pipe for regulating the ratio between the surface stream and infiltration.

The other aspect of the question is of great interest too. It consists in the fact, that with the alternative modification of the same binding materials it is possible to create an underground protective layer above the pipe, which will minimize infiltration of water from the top and the sides and will eliminate the contact of aggressive water with the pipe.

The investigations show that the solutions applied in the different climatic conditions need different correction of composition. That is why the project calls for running experimental investigation in natural environment in different climatic and hypsometric zones aiming at elaborating alternative compositions for specific conditions.

The Project will be developed through participation of specialists of engineering geological, biological, hydrogeological,, agrochemical, technical and other spheres - doctors and candidates of sciences, specialists-engineers of long standing record of service in corresponding fields.

The expected results may be both of fundamental and applied importance. Implementation of the Project will develop the optimal method of preserving slopes and scarps of different origin and structure and will replenish our general knowledge on the state of natural and artificial slopes of Georgia.

Applied meaning of the Project consists in development and application of the technique to specific objects, preservation of stability of which is important national-economic task for Georgia.

When developed the technique of consolidation and re-cultivation of erosive slopes and spoil banks will be applied for slopes of any configuration and geological structure and be implemented shortly (from 1 to 3 months) depending on climatic conditions. The novelty of the investigation to be run consists in the fact that the water solution of natural materials are used and consolidation-re-cultivation occurs simultaneously without application of bio-textile and additional arrangements and expenditures.

Implementation of the Project creates the possibility to realize purposes and basic problems of ISTC:

1. To give possibility to scientists and specialists of Georgia, connected with weapons, to take reorientation their abilities to the pacific activity;
2. To stimulate the integration of Georgian scientists to International Scientific Society;
3. To sustain fundamental and applied investigations for pacific purposes, in particular, in the sphere of environment security and rational use of natural resources.

The total volume of works by Project is 120.8 man-month.

The participation of foreign Collaborators in the process of Project development means the exchange of information during Project implementation, joint consideration of technical reports, assistance in attendance in International conference and organization of joint seminars and consultations.

The technical approach and methodology foresee use of modern apparatus and modern analytic methods of investigation in field and laboratory conditions.