Rainfall erosion resistance of various compost soils on roadside embankment

Ming Xiao, Christopher Abela, Keith Mortensen, Michael Beltran, Aaron Oliver

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


Compost use in landscaping and erosion control applications has become widespread. Various types of composts have been utilized on highway embankments. Erosion resistance could vary with different compost materials. The objective of this study is to investigate the erosion resistance of three types of widely used composts. Rainfall simulators were constructed to simulate natural rain of 3.0 in/hr. Soil boxes were designed and built to simulate inclined embankments. Bench scale experiments were first conducted to test the erosion of natural base soils (sand, silt, and sandy clay) under 1 hr rainfall. Excessive soil losses were observed in all base soils, and silt slope failed during the test. Then repeated rainfall erosion tests were performed on sandy slopes with three types of composts covers (green compost, manure compost, and biosolid and green material co-composts). The co-compost slope retained stability and the other two compost slopes failed. Chemical and biological constituents in the runoff were analyzed. The concentrations of the analyzed constituents were high in the initial rainfall event and reduced with sequential rainfalls. Most of the toxic metal concentrations in the runoff were less than the EPA criteria. Copyright ASCE 2008.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationProceedings of session of GeoCongress 2008 - GeoCongress 2008
Subtitle of host publicationGeosustainability and Geohazard Mitigation, GSP 178
Number of pages8
StatePublished - 2008
EventGeoCongress 2008: Geosustainability and Geohazard Mitigation - New Orleans, LA, United States
Duration: Mar 9 2008Mar 12 2008

Publication series

NameGeotechnical Special Publication
ISSN (Print)0895-0563


OtherGeoCongress 2008: Geosustainability and Geohazard Mitigation
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityNew Orleans, LA

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Architecture
  • Building and Construction
  • Geotechnical Engineering and Engineering Geology


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