Skip to content

Geosynthetic clay liners (GCLs) are widely used as hydraulic or chemical barrier systems in geoenvironmental and hydraulic engineering. Despite the importance of maintaining GCLs in a hydrat-ed condition for best performance, GCLs commonly operate under unsaturated conditions. Hence, knowledge of the soil water characteristic curve (SWCC) is important to describe the relationship be-tween suction and water content. Despite previous efforts, a gap in our knowledge of the effect of temper-ature and void ratio on the SWCC of GCLs remains. The importance of void ratio emanates from the ex-pansive nature of bentonite clay which leads to swelling or shrinkage of GCLs when hydrated or dehydrated. In this paper, we report an experimental investigation of the effects of temperature and void ratio on the SWCC of a GCL. We conduct a set of suction measurements, at different water contents, us-ing Barcelona cells and Decagon’s Vapour Sorption Analyser based on axis-translation technique and dew point technique, respectively. Results are presented and a preliminary relationship describing the ef-fects of temperature and void ratio on SWCCs of GCLs is proposed.