The damages resulting from frost heaving are the main causes of channel destruction in seasonal frozen soil regions. Over the years, many experimental studies have been performed regarding the channel anti-frost heaving in the Hetao irrigation area. However, there have been few experimental research studies conducted regarding the insulation and anti-frost heave effects of polystyrene boards (EPS) of different thicknesses. Therefore, in order to explore the insulation mechanism and anti-frost heave effects of precast EPS laid under the conditions of different thicknesses, an anti-frost heave test field was established in the Hetao irrigation area for the examination of the ground temperatures, frozen depths, frost heave amounts, and water content change rules. This study’s results showed that, for the laid EPS with thicknesses between 2 and 12 cm, the frost-heave reduction rate ranged from 53.2% to 92.6%; total accumulated temperature warming ranged from 248.65% to 565.93%; and the frozen depth reduction rate was between 59.8% and 75.9%. It was determined that the EPS per cm additions could effectively improve the ground temperatures at a buried depth of 30 cm by 0.78 °C, and reduce the frozen depth by 10.1 cm. Then, by comprehensively considering the positive economic and insulation effects, it was determined that the most appropriate thickness of the EPS laid under the precast concrete slabs in the Hetao irrigation area of Inner Mongolia was 8–10 cm.
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License
which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited