Evaluation of depth-dependent properties of municipal solid waste using a large diameter-borehole sampling method

John Hartwell, M. Sina Mousavi, Jongwan Eun, Shannon Bartelt-Hunt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

This study is to analyze geotechnical properties and biological status of undisturbed municipal solid waste (MSW) associated with depth by using a large-diameter borehole sampling method. Through the method, a 28 m-borehole with 0.8 m of the diameter was drilled into the MSW body consisting of ten-lift layers of waste placed over 4000 days in an operating landfill. MSW sample cuttings were collected from the field site, weighted, and transferred to a laboratory for additional experiments to measure various properties such as moisture content, constituent characterization, unit weights, specific gravity, decomposition state, saturation, and compression rates with regard to waste depth. Also, the methane production obtained from MSW decomposition tests indicated that waste mass was relatively consistent throughout the depth of borehole and had not reached the accelerated production phase of methane. The wet and dry unit weights of the MSW sample with different depths produced excellent trends of the first-order rate with vertical stress. First Oder Rate Equation (FORE) analysis indicated that the maximum total and dry unit weight of MSW ((Formula presented.) and (Formula presented.)) achieved at depth in the waste mass were 12.9 kN/m3 and 10.6 kN/m3, respectively. Based on the waste shrinkage ratio (WSR) defined as the initial dry unit weight divided by succeeding dry unit weight, the height of the original MSW pile was estimated to be 40.5 m. Different compression parameters, including aggregated MSW compression index (Cc), modified compression index (CCE), and compression ratio parameter (Cc’), were comparably evaluated, which can be beneficial to understand compressibility and settlement processes in a landfill. Implications: Geotechnical properties and biological status of undisturbed municipal solid waste (MSW) associated with depth were analyzed by using a large-diameter borehole sampling method. The wet and dry unit weights of the MSW sample with different depths produced excellent trends of the first-order rate with vertical stress. Based on the waste shrinkage ratio (WSR) defined as the initial dry unit weight divided by succeeding dry unit weight, the height of the original MSW pile was estimated to be 40.5 m. Different compression parameters, including aggregated MSW compression index (Cc), modified compression index (CCE), and compression ratio parameter (Cc’), were comparably evaluated, which can be beneficial to understand compressibility and settlement processes in a landfill.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)433-446
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of the Air and Waste Management Association
Volume71
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - 2021

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law

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