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Freezing of Soils on Civil Engineering

DOI: 10.1615/ICHMT.1986.IntSympHMTinRefCryo.90
pages 117-139

Jaime Aguirre-Puente
Laboratoire d'Aérothermique du C.N.R.S., F92190, Meudon, France


Security and reliability of structures built in regions where temperatures below 0°C can be observedor imposed, require the consideration of the behaviour of soils during freezing and the provisional or permanent modifications on its mechanical properties.
Particularly, engineers frequently must consider this kind of problems to project structures against Low temperatures during winter or against the effects of near cold sources. In other occasions, they need control natural or artificial Low temperatures which are volontarily used to obtain zones of frozen soil.
The thermo-mechanical processes of soil freezing put very specific problems because, below 0°C, water and ice can co-exist in the pores of the porous medium, and cryogenic effects tend to modify the soil matrix and,, consequently, the stability of the eventual structures.
Before a discussion about soil freezing applications, it is convenient to give an idea of the physical bases of the thermal process. Concepts of heat transfer, thermo dynamics and porous media must be used to explain the particular behaviour of the soils.

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