Biosealing: A Method for in situ Sealing of Leakages

M. Blauwa, J. W. M. Lambert and M. N. Latil

Geo Engineering, Deltares, Stieltjesweg 2, Delft, 2628 CK, The Netherlands.


Leakages in civil-engineering water retaining constructions or in natural impervious layers are a major problem in constructional and environmental applications. Traditional techniques for sealing these leakages have many disadvantages as they are expensive and environmental unfriendly. Much research has been done for using microorganisms to induce bioclogging for sealing the leakages. BioSealing is a novel method, developed by Deltares, for suitable in situ clogging of leakages in subsurface constructions and natural layers. It is caused by stimulating bacteria that are naturally present in the subsurface. Both laboratory and field tests have shown that BioSealing can successfully repair leakages in water retaining civil constructions like sheet pile walls and earth dams. A reduction with a factor 5–20 was achieved in all cases. This method has as huge advantage that the leak location does not need to be known precisely and that sealing takes place specifically at the location of the leak.

Keywords: Bioclogging; 3D field scale; BioSealing.

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