Rail Embankments

Railway embankment construction projects benefit from the the use of geosynthetics for slope stabilisation, embankment erosion control, earthworks drainage, consolidation and settlement control.

ABG are a market leader in the development, manufacture and technical support of high performance geosynthetics with applications across the whole spectrum of rail infrastructure.



  • Cost-effective alternative to granular gravel drainage
  • Faster earthworks settlement
  • Reduced material imports resulting in less vehicle movements
  • Pore pressure relief

Embankment Drainage, Consolidation & Settlement Control

At ABG we are specialists in the design, manufacture and supply of geosynthetic drainage systems for rail engineering projects. Through our expertise in designing geosynthetics for major civil engineering projects, we have developed a range of geocomposites that are used in place of traditional drainage stone to provide a significant reduction in the environmental impact, costs and installation times.

Fildrain 7DD and Fildrain 7DHD geocomposite drainage layers are the most advanced system for relieving pore pressure in the construction of new railway embankments. This proven method of construction has BBA certification for the starter layer and subsequent layers through the height of the embankment to aid consolidation without expensive aggregate.

Full settlement of new railway embankments must be achieved before the permanent way ballast and track is laid. Embankment fill is placed at optimum moisture content for compaction. This invariably means that the compacted fill, as a result of pore pressure, is too wet to support long term loads without settlement. Relief of pore pressure and speeding consolidation is critical to deliver projects on time and within budget.

Fildrain geocomposites are used to create horizontal drainage layers at typically one metre vertical spacing for quick reduction of pore pressure. Compared to crushed stone, it is cost effective to install Fildrain at close spacing. Fildrain is also impermeable in the vertical plane which means that each layer of Fildrain protects the earthworks from the ingress of rainfall.

Projects have been fully consolidated in 25% of the time normally expected using traditional methods. Fildrain geocomposite even enables the use of otherwise unsuitable over wet material. This allows greater use of site-won fill which minimises earthworks movements.

Embankment Erosion Control

ABG offer a comprehensive range of environmentally friendly erosion control materials including biodegradable and permanent geosynthetics as well as turf reinforcement mats. Erosion control mats are are designed to provide surface protection from the damaging effects of wind and rain, and enhance the structural stability of newly cut slopes in railway applications.

Erosamat Type 1, Erosamat Type 2 and Erosamat Type 4 are biodegradable coir / jute erosion control geosynthetics ideal for promoting vegetation growth on new embankments. Erosamat Type 3 erosion control mat is a closely packed matrix of polypropylene fibres thermally bonded together to create a tough and flexible, long lasting erosion control mat. It is suitable for all situations where permanent erosion control is required. As a system it provides the root reinforcement necessary for natural vegetation to resist the extreme effects of wind, rain and high water velocity.

Managing erosion on railway embankments and rock face protection is essential when the consequences of failure impact on the safe operation of infrastructure.

Installing an effective erosion control system provides immediate protection to the rock face and underlying soils whilst allowing long-term protection through healthy vegetation development.

The Erosamesh system from ABG combines the proven erosion protection performance of Erosamat Type 3 with the durability of a woven hexagonal steel mesh. Wire mesh has a proven track record in slope stabilisation applications where it is used to prevent rock sliding and progressive stalling.

It is suitable for steep slope erosion control and surface reinforcement for soil nailed slopes in rail sector applications. The Erosamesh system provides immediate protection against erosion occurring in high risk applications. It spreads loads between soil nail heads and stabilises the slope surface.

Geocells can be used to provide effective slope reinforcement. Erosaweb geocell is designed for the reinforcement of weak soils and has many applications including the retention of soils on steep railway slopes. The permeable honeycomb structure of the Erosaweb geocell system has been developed for topsoil/stone retention on steep railway embankment slopes. Once installed it forms a blanket of shallow pockets across the slope face into which fill is placed, protecting the slope and fill from erosion forces whilst allowing vegetation to establish for long-term protection.

Slope Stabilisation & Reinforced Earthworks

Trigrid and Abgrid geogrids can be used in a variety of steep-faced earthworks, rail embankments and to provide veneer slope stabilisation. They can be also be used with a variety of finishes (gabions, hard facing, vegetated and so on) to meet aesthetic requirements.

Retaining Walls

Webwall® Geocell is a vegetated retaining wall system for steep-faced walls from 0.5m to 25m. Webwall® Geocell uses site won fill and therefore is quicker and more cost effective than gabions, sheet piles, crib walls, precast or cast in-situ concrete.

Webwall® utilises geocellular technology to produce panels that are supplied flat for ease of handling and then expanded on site to create almost vertical vegetated walls. The front of each panel is coloured green to minimise the visual impact of the wall until vegetation has established. Other colours are available by special request.


RISQS Verified

ABG are RISQS Verified – (Railway Industry Supplier Qualification Scheme)

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