Investigating water holding barriers for climate adaptation

David G. Toll (Lead / Corresponding author), Heather Kerr, Paul N. Hughes, Karen L. Johnson, Ashraf S. Osman, Snehasis Tripathy, Hanlin Wang, Stephen W. Rees, A. Glyn Bengough, David Boldrin, Jonathan A. Knappett, Jeyaraj Thangarajah, Pratiksha Pandey, Vinayagamoothy Sivakumar, Pauline McKinnon, Aikaterini Tsiampousi, Alexandros Petalas, Lidija Zdravkovic, David M. Potts, Ross A. StirlingJessica Holmes, Stephanie Glendinning, Colin T. Davie, Anthony K. Leung

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review


CACTUS (Climate Adaptation Control Technologies for Urban Spaces) is an ongoing research project that is investigating the development of “climate adaptation composite barrier systems” capable of limiting the impact of a changing environment on buried geo-infrastructure, such as retaining walls and foundations. The project partners are investigating: (i) a range of potential soil types (with amendments) that will meet the desired requirements of climate adaptation engineered barriers (permeability and water holding capacity); (ii) the independent and combined impacts of wet-dry and freeze-thaw cycles on the volume change and strength characteristics of the potential barrier materials; (iii) appropriate species of vegetation that can promote removal of water from the water holding layer; (iv) experimental modelling of stress-deformation characteristics (lateral and axial) of the soil systems when subject to wetting and drying; (v) numerical modelling of the composite barrier systems to develop protocols for implementing the novel systems; (vi) trial implementation of the proposed technologies at field scale.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages6
Publication statusPublished - 5 May 2022
Event20th International Conference on Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering - Sydney, Australia
Duration: 1 May 20225 May 2022


Conference20th International Conference on Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering
Internet address


  • Climate adaptation; Barriers; Water holding capacity; Soil water retention curves; Freeze-thaw


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