Engineering performance and microstructure characteristics of natural marine sediment stabilized with quicklime-activated GGBS under different lime proportions

Guang Hua Cai, Yi Fan Zhou, Chi Sun Poon, Jiang Shan Li

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


The safe treatment of marine sediment has been a global-scale challenge. To reduce the environmental impacts associated with Portland cement (PC), an environment-friendly binder consisting of quicklime and ground granulated blast-furnace slag (GGBS) was used in the stabilization/solidification of natural marine sediment. Although the combination of lime and GGBS is used to stabilize the sediment with very low water content or moderate water content in previous studies, the natural marine sediment with such a high water content has not been treated by the quicklime–GGBS binder up to now. Therefore, a series of tests were performed to study the physicochemical, mechanical, and microstructural characteristics of quicklime–GGBS stabilized sediments. The results indicated that the quicklime–GGBS solidified/stabilized sediment had a similarly low water content at a proper quicklime-binder ratio to that of PC-stabilized sediments. The pH of quicklime–GGBS solidified sediments gradually decreased as the quicklime-binder ratio decreased and the curing period increased. The unconfined compressive strength (UCS) of quicklime–GGBS stabilized sediments was 1.4 times higher than that of the corresponding PC-stabilized sediments using the same test conditions. The hydration products effectively bonded the sediment particles and filled the pores between the sediment particles, facilitating the improvement of the UCS of the quicklime–GGBS stabilized sediment. The findings indicated that the use of GGBS and a small amount of quicklime can replace PC to stabilize natural marine sediment with high water content. This would be to provide binder dosage and component proportion for the field application of quicklime–GGBS binder and to significantly improve the economical and environmental effects of the treatment of high water content sediment. HIGHLIGHTS Innovative lime-activated GGBS is used as a binder in the improvement of sediment with ultrahigh water content. The water content, pH, and UCS of lime–GGBS stabilized sediments are contrastively studied. The engineering performances of lime-GGBS stabilized sediments are better than those of PC-stabilized sediment. An optimal and appropriate lime-binder ratio is suggested. Microstructure mechanism of lime–GGBS stabilized sediment is revealed through series of micro-tests.

Original languageEnglish
JournalMarine Georesources and Geotechnology
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2022


  • engineering performance
  • ground granulated blast-furnace slag
  • marine sediment
  • microstructural features
  • quicklime
  • quicklime-binder ratio
  • Stabilization/solidification

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oceanography
  • Geotechnical Engineering and Engineering Geology
  • Ocean Engineering


Dive into the research topics of 'Engineering performance and microstructure characteristics of natural marine sediment stabilized with quicklime-activated GGBS under different lime proportions'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this