Field Experiments

In order to seal a leaking interval at the base of a dam at the Irelyakh hydrosystem in Mirny City, Sakha Republic (Yakutia) we have developed the CRYOGEL-1 system based on PVA and a cross-linking agent. The system is capable of forming gels at 0-20 0C during several hours and then cryogels during the freeze-thaw process. In August-September of 2003, 51 tons of cryogel-forming solution were injected into 5 holes at the base of the dam. This injection formed a cryogel barrier that is 15m in length, 3 m thick and covers an area of about 430 m2 at a depth ranging from 16 to 45 m. The barrier created a cutoff wall which decreased water infiltration by 150 times. The results of geophysical studies and hydrodynamic investigations in a test hole, drilled between the third and the fourth holes into which the cryogel was injected, show that the average specific water absorbing was 0.15 L/(min-m-m water column) up to 40 m deep, highlighting the positive results of the research.

In 2004 the work at the Irelyakh hydrosystem dam was continued. Based on the regulations of IPC SB RAS Stock Company, "Korona-TEK" designed and made equipment for the preparation and injection of cryogel-forming solutions. In September-November of 2004 starboard plugging of the dam, where the filtration was the strongest, was successfully carried out. A total of 70 tons of cryogel-forming solution was injected into 13 holes to create a cryogel barrier at a depth ranging from 13 to 43 meters.

In 2005 cryogel-forming solutions will be injected into more than 100 holes to create a cutoff wall along the full length of the Irelyakh hydrosystem dam.

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