Whenever construction is carried out upon soft or unstable ground, there is the possibility of settlement: this can include geological effects caused by subsidence, sink holes as well as man-made effects, such as mining voids
On the other hand, when overburden on native ground is largely increased, such as with the construction of new embankments, there is the issue of differential settlement or collapse.
Differential settlement can be controlled by the construction of a basal platform to spread the loading upon the ground. In extreme circumstances, this platform can also be supported upon piles, for example within embankments supporting critical road or rail infrastructure. The performance of this platform can be enhanced by using high strength geosynthetic geogrids, which absorb, spread, span or dissipate the vertical loads downwards into the ground or piles. This can often lead to an increase in the pile spacing and therefore offer a significant cost saving through the reduction in number of piles within the basal platform.
Maccaferri Paralink®️ is a unique high performance geogrid for use in demanding geotechnical applications where high loads, seismic events or aggressive ground conditions are encountered. Developed in the 1970s, it is the oldest and most proven geogrid of its kind available on the market. Paralink®️ has been used extensively across the world to span soft ground, piled foundations and voids.
With a BBA certified design life of 120 years, Paralink®️ offers the most beneficial partial safety factors (including creep, installation damage and chemical resistance), which on average allows 70 per cent of the ultimate tensile strength to be used as the long term design strength value at 120 years.
Paralink®️ has recently been supplied to the HS2 project for use as part of a basal platform over piles supporting construction of a new embankment on the outskirts of Birmingham. Grades of varying strengths 950kN/m to 1,600kN/m were selected to cope with the high loads imparted by the embankment fill and trafficking loads.
Paralink®️ has also been used on HS2 within a reinforced soil retaining embankment designed to support a temporary track realignment at a location in West London. Paralink®️ 1200kN/m strength geogrid was selected by the designers to accommodate the high loading conditions on the embankment resulting from the location of large gantry cranes next to the
diverted rail track.
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