Leakage mates through flaws in membrane liners

Priyantha W. Jayawickrama, Kirk W. Brown, James C. Thomas, Robert L. Lytton

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

35 Scopus citations


A detailed experimental and theoretical study was undertaken to evaluate the leak rate of liquids through flaws in synthetic flexible membrane liners (FMLs) into a compacted soil subbase. In the experimental phase of the research study a series of large scale laboratory permeameter tests were performed to determine the influence of the various factors on the leakage rate of water. The parameters examined included the water head above the FML, the hydraulic conductivity of the subbase material, the size and shape of the flaw, and the type and thickness of the FML. The results revealed that the liquid spreads laterally along a gap between the liner and the subsoil, with simultaneous infiltration into the soil. In the analytical phase of the study, a model was developed to simulate the aforementioned flow mechanisms. Subsequently, the calibrated model was used to prepare a set of tables and graphs which may be used to predict potential leak rates in field installations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1401-1420
Number of pages20
JournalJournal of Environmental Engineering (United States)
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 1988


Dive into the research topics of 'Leakage mates through flaws in membrane liners'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this