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    Environmental Testing of Rock Used as Erosion Protection in Arid Environments

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    Crushed rock fragments are used in arid environments to control slope erosion. A test technique was developed to asses the durability of these fragments when solar heated to summer temperatures and then “quenched” by thunderstorms containing hail. Aggregates were heated to 66° C and maintained at that temperature for 23 hours. At the completion of the heating cycle the rock fragments were cooled to room temperature, over a one hour period, then soaked for 24 hours in water. The water was decanted and the particles placed back in the oven for an another 24 hours of heating. This 48 hour cycle was repeated for a minimum of 50 times. At the completion of the 50 cycle test period the grain size distributions of the materials were compared to the original size distributions. Each of the rock types experienced some distress although most were judged suitable for use as slope protection. Observation of actual slope protection endurance is continuing for several of the rock types placed on freeway slopes.


    Rock fragments, slope erosion, slope protection, arid slope protection

    Author Information:

    Duffy, DM
    Associate Professor, Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ

    Hatzell, HH
    Assistant Professor, College of Engineering, Arizona State UniversityUS Geological Survey, Tallahassee, FL

    Committee/Subcommittee: D18.17

    DOI: 10.1520/STP15939S