Erosion and Sediment Control

Technical Paper

Full-Scale Performance Evaluations of Various Non-Woven, Wire Backed Silt Fence Installation Configurations

Monday, February 12
2:50 PM - 3:50 PM

PDH: 1

Location: 101A

Level of Presentation: All: Suitable for a broad audience

Silt fence performance, when used as a perimeter control, can be affected by a wide variety of factors (i.e., material properties, installation techniques, and site characteristics). The ability to evaluate differences in such factors provides a corridor for improvement that would likely go unnoticed in uncontrolled field conditions. The sediment barrier testing apparatus at the Auburn University Erosion and Sediment Control Test Facility (AU-ESCTF) has shown that by consistently replicating factors such as: topography, flow rate, and sediment loading; performance evaluations can be conducted on various types of sediment barriers and installation methods. This presentation will discuss eight different installation configurations tested on a non-woven, wire backed reinforced silt fence to determine performance as it relates to structural integrity, sediment retention, and water quality.

Learning Objectives:

Target Audience: Academic,Contractor,Engineer,Government Agency

J. Blake Whitman

Graduate Research Assistant
Auburn University - Department of Civil Engineering

J. Blake Whitman is a Graduate Research Assistant pursuing a Ph.D. in the Department of Civil Engineering at Auburn University. He specializes in construction site logistics planning, construction site erosion and sediment control practices, heavy civil project management, and municipal separate storm sewer system (MS4) analysis. Blake earned his M.S. (2014) and B.S. (2012) in civil engineering from Auburn University. He has worked as a project manager within the private construction industry, as well as with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Blake developed and implemented a methodology for surveying and analyzing the MS4 infrastructure at Fort Benning, GA, and has conducted research on site logistics optimization and planning. Currently his research efforts at the Auburn University – Erosion and Sediment Control Testing Facility focus on improving sediment barrier standard practices for the Alabama Department of Transportation.

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Wesley C. Zech

Brasfied & Gorrie Professor of Construction Engineering and Management
Auburn University - Department of Civil Engineering

Wesley C. Zech is the Brasfield and Gorrie Professor of Construction Engineering and Management at Auburn University. He earned a B.S. (1999), M.E. (2000), and a Ph.D. (2004) from the University at Buffalo. He has been at Auburn University since 2004 and has conducted external research in collaboration with the Alabama Department of Transportation (ALDOT) that led to the development of the Auburn University Erosion and Sediment Control Testing Facility (AU-ESCTF). His research has focused on applying large-scale testing techniques to evaluate the performance of various erosion and sediment control practices including: silt fence tiebacks, the use of polyacrylamide, hydromulches, ditch checks, inlet protection measures, sediment barriers, catch basin inserts, and sediment basins. Many of the research results from these efforts have been adopted as standard erosion and sediment control practices used on highway construction projects in the state of Alabama. His current research endeavors include characterizing the performance of high-rate settling techniques in sediment basins, the performance of sediment barrier systems, using unmanned aerial vehicles for construction site inspections, and the design and deployment of a rainfall simulator.

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Full-Scale Performance Evaluations of Various Non-Woven, Wire Backed Silt Fence Installation Configurations

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