Skip to content


Ground movements associated with swelling and shrinkage characteristics of expansive clays during winter and summer respectively, pose a serious threat to most of the civil engineering structures, especially those of imposing light to medium stresses over the underlying expansive clays. In this paper an attempt is made to control the swell – shrink potential of expansive clays using geosynthetic material viz geogrid, geomembrane, geocomposite and geotextile. Swelling and shrinkage tests were independently conducted on compacted expansive clays with varying number, orientation and end confined geosynthetic materials. From the results, it is observed that the swell potential of clay decreases with increasing of number of layers of geosynthetics and the order of reduction in swelling potential is geomembrane > geogrid > geocomposite > geotextile. End confined geosynthetics controls swelling to 50 – 80% higher than the case of unconfined geosynthetics. Vertically placed geogrid reinforcement controlled the swell better than the one that is horizontally placed. However, no effect on the swelling potential is observed because of vertically placed geotextile or geomembrane. Unlike swelling, horizontally placed geogrid and geocomposite controlled the shrinkage potential for about 50% to 60% higher than the vertically placed one.