Use of waste streams and microbes for in situ transformation of sand into sandstone

Wouter R.L. Van Der Star, Edris Taher, Marien P. Harkes, Maaike Blauw, Mark C.M. Van Loosdrecht, Leon A. Van Paassen

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

6 Scopus citations

Abstract

In the BioGrout process, sand is strengthened to sandstone with a strength, which is controllable from 0.3 to 30MPa (unconfined compressive strength) using biobased methods in which calcium carbonate (calcite) is precipitated in situ. The spectacular increase in strength, coupled to a limited reduction in porosity and permeability, makes the method a promising alternative to chemical grouting methods. The product is applicable in many geo- and civil-engineering applications, like strengthening of dykes, the production of underwater reefs or reducing risk of piping. A first generation of the process based on the hydrolysis of urea has been applied on a 100 m3 scale. Denitrification is one of the microbial processes which can be used as a BioGrout process. In this process, calcium nitrate and calcium-fatty acids are converted to form calcite by denitrifying microbes. These organisms are already present in the subsoil in low numbers, but are selectively enriched upon addition of the substrates the required substrates can be produced from chalk, manure and waste streams from food industries or tanneries. When nitrate is completely reduced, nitrogen gas is the only side product, emphasizing the sustainability of this new ground improvement method. In this contribution, the governing principles behind the method are elucidated and applications are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationGeotechnical Society of Singapore - International Symposium on Ground Improvement Technologies and Case Histories, ISGI'09
Pages177-182
Number of pages6
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 16 2010
Externally publishedYes
EventInternational Symposium on Ground Improvement Technologies and Case Histories, ISGI'09 - Singapore, Singapore
Duration: Dec 9 2009Dec 12 2009

Publication series

NameGeotechnical Society of Singapore - International Symposium on Ground Improvement Technologies and Case Histories, ISGI'09

Other

OtherInternational Symposium on Ground Improvement Technologies and Case Histories, ISGI'09
CountrySingapore
CitySingapore
Period12/9/0912/12/09

Keywords

  • BioGrout process
  • Grouting methods
  • MICP
  • Microbially induced carbonate precipitation
  • Soil strengthening
  • Sporosarcina pasteurii
  • Urease

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geotechnical Engineering and Engineering Geology

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  • Cite this

    Van Der Star, W. R. L., Taher, E., Harkes, M. P., Blauw, M., Van Loosdrecht, M. C. M., & Van Paassen, L. A. (2010). Use of waste streams and microbes for in situ transformation of sand into sandstone. In Geotechnical Society of Singapore - International Symposium on Ground Improvement Technologies and Case Histories, ISGI'09 (pp. 177-182). (Geotechnical Society of Singapore - International Symposium on Ground Improvement Technologies and Case Histories, ISGI'09). https://doi.org/10.3850/GI126