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The Reactions in Soil Environment Laboratory focuses on processes that take place in the soil, such as biological and physiochemical, that affect soil behavior. A primary focus of the experimental laboratory is how biologically mediated soil improvement changes the mechanical properties, such as the strength and stiffness, of the soil. By harnessing in situ biological activity, engineers can improve the soil behavior for a variety of loading conditions.

Bio-mediated soil improvement encompasses the confluence of geotechnical engineering, microbiology, and geochemistry. This soil improvement technique utilizes natural subsurface biological activity to induce cementation. This cementation process occurs naturally over geologic periods; however, it can be utilized to cement the soil grains together in short engineering time periods by altering the geochemistry of the pore space.

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The graduate student experience in our lab strives to be broad and well-rounded. Students are mentored to approach research using fundamental science-based inquiry in a supportive, interdisciplinary research environment. The graduate experience not only includes developing research skills, but also professional skills that will benefit the students throughout their careers, including presentations at professional conferences, site visits, and interactions with collaborators.

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