Pullout Feb 18, 2015 at 4:00 am

I'm Not Talking About the Coldness of Construction Machinery—the Ground Itself Is Literally Freezing

Construction on the seawall project, right next to the viaduct. Kelly O


One of these technologies involved freezing the ground beneath the deteriorating tanks that contain radioactive waste. Nothing came of this idea
Not true. They are using this idea at the Fukushima meltdown area to reduce radioactive water seepage into the ocean. They also tried something similar at Chernobyl when they didn't know the status of the plant. They drilled under the reactor and pumped in liquid nitrogen. It was unnecessary, but it did show their desperation and confusion.
Doesn't this also cause the water in the soil to expand and condense as it freezes and thaws? Wouldn't this increase instability?
This technology is also being used in a New York subway project. Basically, its a good way to provide shoring if you cant use traditional methods. You can do it with refrigerated brine (which takes forever) or with liquid Nitrogen (doesn't take forever, but does cost a lot).
@ 2 I suppose you could get some heave with a fully saturated soil, but even then I'd bet it isnt much really. If the soil isn't fully saturated then the ice would just take up some of the space air is occupying in the soil.

This tech is actually in use, it's no new thing. Its just kind of only used in odd situations where easier fixes won't work as well.
Seriously cool.

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