NAUE shores up Schwarze Elster´s detour case study


Courtesy of Courtesy of NAUE GmbH & Co.KG

Lusatia is a region in Germany and Poland. The original  meaning of Lusatia is something along the line of “swampy, wet  meadows.” Lusatia is separated into two parts that, in terms of the landscape, are completely different: Upper Lusatia and Lower Lusatia. In the Northwest, Lower Lusatia is bordered by the Fläming ridge; and in the West it’s bordered by the Schwarze Elster (“Black Magpie”) River, a 179-km long tributary of the Elbe River. The Schwarze Elster River flows through Senftenberg and Kleinkoschen, two villages in the South of Brandenburg (Lower Lusatia). The small river curves to the left around Lake Senftenberg (Senftenberger See), and leaves Lake Geierswald  (Geierswalder See) to the right of it. Both lakes are artificial lakes  and were once part of the lignite (brown coal) pits during the time of the German Democratic Republic. Both artificial lakes  receive their water from the Schwarze Elster River. Navigable artificial channels connect approximately 6,500  hectares of water. And one of these navigable channels is  currently being constructed between Lake Senftenberg (1,300  hectares) and Lake Geierswald (620 hectares), in the  aforementioned village of Kleinkoschen. The Lusatian and  central German mining management company Lausitzer und Mitteldeutsche Bergbau- Verwaltungsgesellschaft mbH gave the order to connect these lakes. The connecting channel is approximately 1 km long. Its bottom is 6 m wide, and the surface is 70 m from side to side. A lock compensates for a height difference of approximately 2 m. The channel’s construction is interesting because two legs of it require tunnels. The first tunnel is 64 m long and routes the channel beneath Federal Highway  96. A longer tunnel (96 m) takes the channel underneath the  Schwarze Elster River. This is, in effect, a loop detour.

The  project’s general contractor, STRABAG AG, with a subsidiary in Senftenberg, tasked NAUE with providing geosynthetics to seal off the detoured Schwarze Elster River. NAUE delivered  approximately 24,000 m² of Bentofix NSP 4900 geosynthetic  clay liner (GCL) to Kleinkoschen for installation. A levelling layer, as well as a protective layer of bulk fill covered by breakwater  stones, was placed above the GCL seal. Since the bed of this  connecting channel lies below the groundwater level, the  project’s construction team installed a special sand ballast mat as the foundation for the breakwater stones. Authorised by the German Federal Waterways Engineering Office (Bundesanstalt für Wasserbau [BAW]), crews installed NAUE’s quartzsand  infused Terrafix B 813 nonwoven fibre mat. Terrafix sand  ballast mats possess excellent hydraulic engineering  properties: flexibility, filtration, and abrasion resistance. Also, Terrafix materials can be installed under water. In this case, underwater installation was necessary. Possessing a filtering effectiveness against soil types one through four, the mats were installed on the floor and embankment of the channel with an overlap of 1 m. The entire construction project is scheduled to be completed in 2011.

Year of construction: 2010
City / Country: Senftenberg, Germany
Installed products:
Bentofix NSP 4900 24.000sqm
Terrafix B813 15.000sqm

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