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All You Need to Know About Gabions


Did you know that gabion walls were used in battlefields as cover for infantry because they are strong enough to take bullets. Gabions are nothing but rectangular baskets which are fabricated using hexagonal mesh which is made up of galvanized steel. These baskets are filled with rocks or pebbles and are stacked on top of one other to act as a gravity type wall. They depend on interlocking stones within the wire mesh to provide internal stability to resist hydraulic and earth forces. Gabions are a type of porous structure which is subject to vegetation. They do not require a foundation as they are heavy, strong and permeable enough to contour to the ground. They are environment friendly easy to install and manufacture, durable and adapt to the natural environment.


Uses of Gabions


Gabions are used to stabilize water flow and neutralize slopes which are prone to seepage. They can be used in areas where the soil conditions, water turbulence and water velocity are adverse. They are used to prevent soil erosion, flooding and soil degradation. They are also used to stabilize areas which do not have enough room to accommodate softer vegetation. Gabions also find applications in gardening, landscaping and farming.They are also used for aesthetic purposes such as in creating garden furniture. They are not only filled with rock and concrete but also filled with shells, bricks, wooden logs, river rocks or glass. Cylindrical gabions are a type of wire mesh gabions which are used as construction molds. Artistic gabions can be displayed as accent walls in outdoor living space. Gabion boxes can be filled with colored glass and back-lit to provide a stunning glow.


How are They Installed


Gabions need to be constructed in a sequential manner and installed with minimum possible delay. They need to installed immediately before any interruption in the case of constructing flood walls. They need to be installed before or in conjunction with pipe construction, so that they are placed before the channel begins to operate.
Gabions need to be inspected on a regular basis especially before the event of a natural disaster.


Types of Gabions



Bastion Gabions

Bastion gabion is equipped with an external lining membrane which is placed inside the wire basket. They have small holes which are designed to allow water out and retain soil. These gabions are used in farmlands and river sides to prevent silt deposition and filter sand and sludge. In some cases they are also used in sea water filtration plants and military fortifications. Bastion gabions are placed around flood prone areas to direct water away from the area.


Reno Mattresses

Reno mattresses are a type of gabion which are low in height and are filled with few centimeters. These gabions are used in areas which are prone to mass surface erosion, they are used in areas which experience mass surface erosion to protect the earth on that location. For example a Reno mattress is laid down over an area in such a manner that it channels the water to go over the rocks while the rocks protect the earth below. They are best used in farmlands to prevent soil erosion in the process of irrigation.


Retaining Walls

Retaining walls are built to counteract the force of the ground load with the help of their own mass or by using an anchoring system. They comprise of gabion baskets which are filled with heavy materials such as stone, concrete or rocks. Gabion baskets can be used to build different types of retaining walls.



Gravity Retaining Walls

Gravity retaining walls are designed to resist pressure from the load behind. Gabion baskets do not require concrete footing or a constructed foundation as the rocks and stones are strong enough to hold the walls.


Sheet Pile Retaining Walls

Sheet pile retaining walls are used in areas which have loose soil, they are made up of wooden or steel planks which are driven to the ground and bordered with gabion baskets to provide added strength. They can be constructed in tight spaces by anchoring tall sheet piles using a tie back anchor from the top of the wall to the ground behind.


Cantilever Retaining Walls

These walls are made up of strong reinforced concrete or mortared masonry. Gabion baskets can be used as an alternative as they are relatively cheap, easy to install and easy to maintain. They can be used to contain concrete and mortared masonry to maximize tensile strength.



Wire Mesh Gabions


Wire mesh gabions comprise of fabricated wire mesh which are made up of galvanized steel or aluminum. Spiral binders are used to fasten wire mesh gabions, they are also used in creating gabion mattress. Woven mesh gabions are constructed using non raveling double twisted hexagonal mesh which comprise of two wires which are twisted together. Welded mesh gabions are created in a uniform square or rectangular pattern with a resistance weld at every intersection for increased tensile strength.

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