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Gabion Baskets – The History: Did you know that Gabions were originally used for protection for infantry and artillery? The portable gabions were made and deployed in little time wherever the enemy placed his fire. Leonardo da Vinci for example designed a type of Gabion called a Corbeille Leonard for the foundations of the San Marco Castle in Milan. Although invented more than one century ago, Gabions are being rediscovered today for many infrastructure and architectural projects.

The most common civil engineering use of gabions was refined and patented by Gaetano Maccaferri in the late 1800s in Sacerno, Emilia Romagna and used to stabilise shorelines, stream banks or slopes against erosion. Other uses include retaining walls, temporary flood walls, silt filtration from run off, for small or temporary/permanent dams, river training, or channel lining.

A gabion is a wire-mesh cage, cylinder or box filled with rocks, concrete, or sometimes sand and soil for use in civil engineering, road building, military applications and landscaping. For erosion control, caged riprap is used. For dams or in foundation construction, cylindrical metal structures are used.

Why choose a Gabion Basket?

1) Sustainable – Carbon footprint analyses show that the use of a gabion solution can reduce CO2 emissions by up to 80% compared to a concrete retaining wall of the same height. If allowed to grow, vegetation can establish within a gabion wall, which can further contribute to carbon sequestration of the solution.

2) Beautiful at a glance – Aesthetics are important. Gabion structures can also be designed so that re-vegetation takes place when plants colonise the interstitial spaces between the rock fill, thus returning the solution to nature.

3) Smart and flexible – Gabions are not just a rural solution. Many modern buildings and infrastructure being designed or updated today are making use of gabions in order to renew their look and meet the demands of sustainability.

4) Scalable – Even if the baseline technology remains the same, the wire-mesh of each retaining wall block can be adapted to different needs. Gabions structures, furthermore, are perfectly scalable as they can be used for massive structures but also for small-scale constructions.

The below animation demonstrates the construction of a Gabion Basket:

For more information about Aarsleff Ground Engineering or to send in your enquiry, call 01636 611140 and speak to a member of our expert team today, or drop us an email 

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