August 18, 2021

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Robert Bachus to Present at EREF Summit

Robert Bachus, Ph.D., P.E. (Georgia) will present on "Why Waste Slides Occur: Factors Attributed to Structure Instability and Lessons Learned" at the Environmental Research & Education Foundation (EREF) Emerging Topics in Landfill Management Summit on September 1st, 2021.

Dr. Bachus co-authored the paper with Geosyntec colleague Rudolph Bonaparte, Ph.D., P.E., D.GE, F.ASCE, NAE, plus Livingstone Dumenu and Wassim Tabet.

Dr. Bachus is a Senior Principal engineer based in Georgia with more than 30 years of professional experience focused on geotechnical engineering, geoenvironmental engineering, waste by-product characterization, and the permitting and design of waste containment facilities. He is nationally recognized for his expertise in geotechnical site characterization, in situ and laboratory testing, settlement and slope stability analysis, and performance monitoring of geotechnical and earthen structure systems. His applied research in geotechnical engineering and solid waste management has yielded significant advancements in performance monitoring instrumentation used for assessing settlement beneath embankments and other earthen structures.


Title: Why Waste Slides Occur: Factors Attributed to Structure Instability and Lessons Learned
Authors: Robert Bachus, Rudolph Bonaparte, Livingstone Dumenu, and Wassim Tabet
Description: The good news is that slope instability events at municipal solid waste (MSW) landfills are relatively uncommon due to design and operational practices by engineers and operators.  At the same time, slope instability events do occasionally occur.  These events usually have significant financial consequences for the facility owner, and they may have environmental and/or worker safety consequences.  This was highlighted in the ASCE 2018 Terzaghi Lecture titled:  Geotechnical Stability of Waste Fills – Lessons Learned and Continuing Challenges (Bonaparte, 2018).  In his presentation and the ensuing paper (Bonaparte et al., 2020), several case history summaries of historic and recent examples of waste slope instability are presented.  The presentation at this EREF Summit highlights many of the lessons enumerated in Bonaparte et al. (2020), by focusing on important factors that affect slope stability.  The presentation at the EREF Summit will provide a quantitative demonstration of: (i) influence of waste strength; (ii) importance of mixing when incorporating low strength solid waste (LSSW) streams; (iii) role of liquids within the waste mass; (iv) importance of maintaining leachate collection system (LCS) performance; and (v) need to consider interim operational slope conditions.

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