Geosynthetics June/July 2022 - 19

covered evaporation ponds for the lithium
mining process.
The geomembrane density gives an
idea of the cost and quality the project
owner can expect to receive from the
PVC geomembrane. FGI Specification
9119 (Fabricated Geomembrane Institute
2019) assigns the density a typical value
of 75 pounds per cubic foot (1,200 kg/
m3). This value comes from the density
of components in the PVC film. PVC
resin has a density of 87 pounds per
cubic foot (1,400 kg/m3), and plasticizers
have densities ranging from 60 to 61
pounds per cubic foot (960 to 980 kg/
m3). PVC geomembranes retain flexibility
at low temperatures, but because
of potential elongation-a minimum
decrease in tensile and tear forces is
desired-it is necessary to add between
30% and 35% plasticizers. Due to the low
density of plasticizers, the compound's
density decreases to values around 76
pounds per cubic foot (1,220 kg/m3).
However, depending on the other raw
materials in the geomembrane, the density
can be higher, up to 81 pounds per
cubic foot (1,300 kg/m3). Some minerals-with
densities higher than PVC
resin-are sometimes incorporated into
the film for various reasons. One of them
is to provide more volume to the final
film, thereby decreasing the cost of the
PVC formulation. Unfortunately, such
minerals cannot act as an elastic material
inside PVC resin. The result is that the
geomembrane can partially lose resilience.
PVC geomembranes with densities
close to 81 pounds per cubic foot (1,300
kg/m3) can be cheaper but will have serious
performance issues.
Using a plasticizer with an average
molecular weight of 410 g/mol, or even
more, helps to maintain the mechanical
properties of resilience and impact resistance
at low temperatures. The higher the
molecular weight of the plasticizer, the
lower its volatility.
The mechanical properties specified
in both ASTM D7176-06 and FGI 9119
provide reliable benchmarks for project
owners, installers and fabricated PVC
geomembrane manufacturers.
References
ASTM D7176-06. (2018). Standard Specification
for Non-Reinforced Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC)
Geomembranes Used in Buried Applications. ASTM
International, West Conshohocken, Pa.
Berube, D., Diebel, P., Rollin, A., and Stark, D. (2007).
" Massive mining evaporation ponds constructed in
Chilean desert. " Geosynthetics 25(1), 26-31.
Bradley, D., Munk, L, Jochens, H., Hynek, S., and Labay,
K. (2013). " A preliminary deposit model for lithium
brines. " U.S. Department of the Interior, U.S. Geological
Survey, Reston, Va.
Christopherson, R. W. (1994). Geosystems: An
introduction to physical geography. Macmillan College
Publishing, Englewood Cliffs, N.J.
e2 Technical Textiles. (2020). e2techtextiles.com/fieldfabricated-geomembranes.
Oct. 26.
El Mostrador. (2020). " Chile doblará producción de
litio a 2030 pero disminuirá su cuota de Mercado. "
elmostrador.cl/dia/2020/08/27/chile-doblaraproduccion-de-litio-a-2030-pero-disminuira-su-cuotade-mercado.
Sept. 9.
Fabricated Geomembrane Institute. (2015). Material
Specification for New PVC Geomembranes 1115. FGI,
Urbana, Ill.
Fabricated Geomembrane Institute. (2019). Material
Specification for New PVC Geomembranes 9119. FGI,
Urbana, Ill.
Garcés, I. (2000). La industria del litio en Chile.
Universidad de Antofagasta, Departamento de
Ingeniería, Química, Chile.
Gray, T. (2012). The elements: A visual exploration of every
known atom in the universe. Black Dog & Leventhal,
New York.
Lopez, A, Obaya, M, Pascuini, P, and Ramos, A. (2019).
Litio en la Argentina: Oportunidades y desafíos para
el desarrollo de la Cadena de Valor. Ministerio de
Educación, Cultura, Ciencia y Tecnología, Presidencia
de la Nación, Buenos Aires, Argentina.
Patrick, J. (2018). " Characteristics of arid climates. "
sciencing.com/characteristics-arid-climates-8441465
.html. March 13.
Rowe, K. (2018). " The effects of wrinkles on
geomembranes. " Webinar Part 3 of 6, Queen's
University, Kingston, Ont., Canada.
Stark, T. (2018). " Stability of geosynthetics lined
slopes-Part 1. " Webinar, Geosynthetic Materials
Association, Roseville, Minn. G
>> For more, search mining
at GeosyntheticsMagazine.com.
GeosyntheticsMagazine.com
19
Using a plasticizer
with an average
molecular weight
of 410 g/mol, or
even more, helps
to maintain the
mechanical properties
of resilience and
impact resistance at
low temperatures. The
higher the molecular
weight of the
plasticizer, the lower
its volatility.
http://www.e2techtextiles.com/field http://www.elmostrador.cl/dia/2020/08/27/chile-doblara http://www.sciencing.com/characteristics-arid-climates-8441465 http://www.GeosyntheticsMagazine.com http://www.GeosyntheticsMagazine.com

Geosynthetics June/July 2022

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Geosynthetics June/July 2022

Geosynthetics June/July 2022 - Cover1
Geosynthetics June/July 2022 - Cover2
Geosynthetics June/July 2022 - 1
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