SYMPOSIA PAPER Published: 01 January 1985

The Design and Testing of a Compacted Clay Barrier Layer to Limit Percolation Through Landfill Covers


The design and testing of a compacted clay barrier layer to restrict vertical percolation through landfill covers is discussed. General relationships between compaction water content, dry unit weight, and permeability related to changes in soil fabric due to varying compaction conditions are reviewed. Laboratory testing programs to evaluate the degree of imperviousness capable of being achieved in the field for a given soil type are outlined, and a case study of the design and testing of a compacted clay barrier over a landfill is presented. Based on the results of the laboratory testing program prior to construction, it was determined that a design permeability of from 1 to 5 × 10−8 cm/s could be achieved by controlling the minimum dry unit weight to greater than 95% of the standard Proctor dry density and the compaction water content to greater than 1% wet of the line of optimums. Results of laboratory permeability testing on undisturbed ring and block samples taken from the landfill barrier layer indicated that an average permeability of 2 × 10−8 cm/s had been achieved.

Author Information

Mundell, JA
University of Notre Dame, Notre Dame, IN
Bailey, B
Engineering, ATEC Associates, Dallas, TX
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Developed by Committee: D18
Pages: 246–262
DOI: 10.1520/STP34582S
ISBN-EB: 978-0-8031-4939-7
ISBN-13: 978-0-8031-0417-4