Volume 39, N. 1, Special Issue: Unsaturated Soils (Invited Editors: G.F.N. Gitirana Jr. & D.G. Fredlund), January-April 2016 | PDF(23 downloads)
Capillary barrier and vegetative slope covers can be used to improve slope stability during rainfall by maintaining matric suction in the slope. A study was performed to investigate the effectiveness of capillary barrier system (CBS) and vegetative slope covers (Orange Jasmine and Vetiver grass) in maintaining soil suction. Performance of slopes with and without slope covers was investigated using field instrumentations and numerical analyses. Laboratory tests were performed to measure hydraulic and shear strength properties of the soil, the soils with Orange Jasmine and Vetiver grassroot, and CBS materials. Numerical analyses were performed to investigate the variation of pore-water pressure profiles at a selected location and factor of safety during low, high, and maximum rainfall intensities. Pore-water pressures measured in the field were used to calibrate the numerical models. Laboratory test results showed that the presence of root increased the shear strength of soil. Numerical analyses and field monitoring results showed that the slope with covers can maintain negative pore-water pressure better than the original slope. Performance of Orange Jasmine, Vetiver grass, and CBS in maintaining matric suction in the slope is essentially similar during low, high, and maximum rainfall intensities.