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Subsurface Drainage

Vincent D. Reynolds, MBA, PE

Water from rainfall can have deleterious effects on the earth’s surface causing erosion and producing sediment. The underlying earth or subsurface of paved roads, runways, and parking lots are protected from rainfall via rigid or flexible surfaces such as asphalt or concrete. However if deteriorated surfaces exist, water can travel to the subbase or subsurface and saturate those surfaces. A subsurface that has been inundated with water is one the main causes of pavement failure. Water caught between a subsurface and flexible or rigid pavement can erode the underlying soil creating voids thus causing the pavement surface to lose some of its structural support.

This course will cover the design of subsurface drainage that is used to drain water away from the subgrade into a channel or piping system. Subsurface drainage is useful for rigid and flexible paved surfaces such as highways, streets, parking lots, runways and other paved areas. A vast amount of information will be presented such as understanding the flow of water through soils, uses of various filters, constructing the drainage layer, and much more. Design examples will also be presented to aid in understanding the course material.

The student will be directed to study the document “Subsurface Drainage,” published by the army corps of engineers which also serves as a document for the Unified Facilities Criteria (UFC).

This course includes a multiple-choice quiz at the end, which is designed to enhance the understanding of the course materials.

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NY PE & PLS: You must choose courses that are technical in nature or related to matters of laws and ethics contributing to the health and welfare of the public. NY Board does not accept courses related to office management, risk management, leadership, marketing, accounting, financial planning, real estate, and basic CAD. Specific course topics that are on the borderline and are not acceptable by the NY Board have been noted under the course description on our website.