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Technical paper: Design aspects of reinforced earth construction

By E R L Cole, Lancashire County Council

This paper was first published in GE’s September 1978 issue and is based on a lecture given by the author at last year’s TRRL/Heriot-Watt University symposium on reinforced earth


A typical section through a reinforced earth retaining wall is given in Fig. 1, showing the four basic components:

(i) Selected fill
(ii) Reinforcing elements
(iii) Cladding units
(iv) Connections between reinforcing elements and cladding units.

It is not intended in this paper to discuss the design criteria for a reinforced earth structure, as the Department of Transport has already stated (Bolton, 1977) that it will be issuing design guidance on this subject. Rather, it will concentrate on matters which are unlikely to be covered in a Technical Memorandum. 

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