Cement-Stabilization of Sabkha Soils from Al-Auzayba, Sultanate of Oman

Yahia E.A. Mohamedzein, Amer A. Al-Rawas

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

43 Citations (Scopus)


Sabkha soils are salt-bearing formations that are formed in arid regions. In their in situ states the sabkha soils have high compressibility and low shear strength. These soils are also heterogeneous and their properties depend on the type and amount of salt present. Thus, these soils are not suitable for support of infrastructures without the risk of high settlement and/or bearing capacity failure. This paper investigates the possibility of using cement to improve the shear strength of sabkha soils for possible use as a foundation-bearing soil. The sabkha soil used in this study is a sandy sabkha obtained from the coastal plains at Al-Auzayba, Sultanate of Oman. Cement was added in percentages of 2.5, 5, 7.5 and 10%, by dry weight of soil. The soil-stabilizer mixers were allowed to cure for 7, 14 and 28 days. Laboratory tests such as compaction, unconfined compression, consolidated undrained triaxial and durability tests were performed to measure the engineering characteristics of the stabilized material. The results showed substantial improvements in the shear strength of the sabkha-cement mixtures and the mixtures are also durable with small weight loss after 12 wetting/drying cycles. Thus, cement can be used to improve the shear strength of sabkha soils. Furthermore, the effective stress path and the tress-strain relation of the sabkha-cement mixtures follow trends similar to those of cemented calcareous soils.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)999-1008
Number of pages10
JournalGeotechnical and Geological Engineering
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2011


  • Cemented-soils
  • Durability
  • Sabkha soils
  • Salt-encrusted soils
  • Shear strength
  • Soil improvement

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Architecture
  • Geotechnical Engineering and Engineering Geology
  • Soil Science
  • Geology


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