Japanese knotweed is an invasive non-native species that is present across Europe having first been introduced during the 19th Century.
Japanese Knotweed has a high growth rate, up to 2m in 30 days, and ability to drive its way through many substrates including tarmac and concrete mean it can present safety and operational issues for the railway by blocking signals, sightlines and positions of safety.
There is legislation covering the rail network that can require knotweed to be controlled or eradicated (Wildlife & Natural Environment (Scotland) Act 2011 and the Infrastructure Act 2015). In addition to this Network Rail standard NR/L2/OTK/5201 Lineside vegetation management manual, as the governing standard, requires that Knotweed should be managed and recorded.
CuTex Copper Composite has been specifically designed for the control of Japanese Knotweed and other invasive plant species.
Where a new signal box was adjacent to live track. CuTex was specified as it negated the need for deep excavation and subsequent engineering prior to concrete pores.
CuTex can provide direct protection from invasive weeds and plants, particularly the risk posed by Japanese Knotweed to environments such as utilities’ infrastructures and foundations, across a wide range of industries including construction, highways, rail and water.
CuTex is a permeable geocomposite root barrier consisting of a copper sheet mechanically encapsulated between a woven polypropylene geotextile and a high strength nonwoven polypropylene geotextile. Cutex functions not only as a physical barrier, but also as a chemical barrier.
The benefits of using CuTex:
Railway-News magazine Issue 4, September 2021: Geofabrics - Clearing the Route: CuTex Geocomposite – Root Barrier Inhibition.
Railway-News Magazine issue 3 2021: GEOfabrics – TrackTex Geocomposite – The ‘Once Only’ Solution to Mud Pumping
In 2010 Geofabrics launched a new anti pumping geocomposite in the UK, which could be used to prevent the development of mud pumping.
This paper describes the development process undertaken to produce a lightweight, geosynthetic filter to replace a sand-blanket used within trackbed.
RK4 - a textile/grid composite, was installed to stabilise the ballast/subgrade interface and reduce the upward movement of subgrade fines.
TrackTex™ Anti-Pumping Geocomposite was used to to provide an increased form of ballast protection in known trouble areas in Christiansburg, Virginia.
TrackTex anti-pumping geocomposite was selected by Network Rail as a method of preventing mud pumping and prolonging trackbed performance.
A statement by Gordon Donald, Managing Director of Geofabrics, regarding the judgement on patent infringement by Fiberweb Geosynthetics Ltd.
TrackTex was installed on a frequently trafficked diamond crossing as a long-term effective remedy to frequent fouling caused by mud-pumping.
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