Stabilization of a Saudi calcareous marl soil

Omar Al-Amoudi, Khaqan Khan, Nasser Saban Al-Kahtani

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

56 Scopus citations


Due to the inferior characteristics of indigenous soils in eastern Saudi Arabia, marl is being utilized to improve their properties. Marl is calcareous in nature and it is well known for its heterogeneous nature in terms of composition and properties. Moreover, it is sensitive to changes in water content and it often requires prior treatment without which a significant strength loss will occur upon water flooding. This paper presents the results of a laboratory investigation focused on the improvement of indigenous marl for its use as a road base material. Various tests were conducted to both characterize and quantify the strength and durability of the studied marl under different field-simulated conditions with and without chemical treatment (lime and cement). The improvement in strength was assessed using California Bearing Ratio (CBR), Clegg Impact Hammer (CIH) and unconfined compressive strength tests and the durability was evaluated using standard and modified durability tests. The results indicated that cement is superior to lime both in terms of strength improvement and durability requirements.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1848-1854
Number of pages7
JournalConstruction and Building Materials
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 2010


  • Calcareous soils
  • CBR
  • Cement
  • Chemical stabilization
  • Clegg impact hammer
  • Durability
  • Lime
  • Marl
  • Strength loss


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