Engineers Australia

Review of utilisation of copper slag in highway construction

Yogendra K. Tandel and Jignesh B. Patel


Due to our booming infrastructure development many waste materials are generated. Traditional materials like fly ash, plastic waste, marble chips etc. are used in highway construction. Copper slag which is produced during the smelting process of copper contains materials like iron, alumina, calcium oxide, silica, etc. For every tonne of metal production about 2.2 tonne of slag is generated. Total generation of copper slag is about 24.6 million tonne throughout the world. Disposal of these huge quantities of slag causes environmental problems. The utilization of such waste materials in road construction is of significant importance. During past decades attempts have been made by several investigators all over the world to explore the possible utilization of copper slag. The bulk utilization of these wastes not only solves the disposal problem of the industries but also protects the environment. This paper discusses the physical, chemical and geotechnical properties of copper slag. Copper slag has also been mixed with local soil in different proportions and the different geotechnical properties have been investigated.