The road construction sector is a worldwide high consumer of natural aggregates. The use of unusual industrial by-products in road techniques can contribute to the conservation of non-renewable natural resources and the reduction of wastes produced by some industries. Phosphate waste rocks could be considered as potential alternative secondary raw materials in road construction. The use and valorization of these wastes is currently limited according to the Moroccan guide for road earthworks (GMTR). The guide has classified these materials as waste products, which consequently, cannot be used in road construction. However, phosphate waste rocks are sedimentary natural rocks which have not been subjected to any transformation other than mechanical fragmentation. The goal of this paper is to discuss key-properties of various phosphate mine waste rocks (PMWR) to be used as road materials. Samples were taken from different stockpiles in the phosphate mine site of Gantour in Morocco. The different waste rocks samples were characterized in terms of their physical, geotechnical, chemical, mineralogical and environmental properties using international testing norms. The obtained results showed that the studied PMWR presented satisfying characteristics; the specific (particle) density: ρs > 26 kN/m3
, Los Angeles abrasion: 45% < LA < 58%), methylene blue value MBV < 1 g/100g, organic matter: OM < 1% and plasticity index: PI < 20%. All PMWR were confirmed as possessing the requested geotechnical properties to be used as materials for embankments. Moreover, leaching tests showed that none of them released any contaminants. In field application, these materials have been also successfully used in in situ experimental pilot testing. Therefore, the PMWR have to be classified in the category of natural aggregates that are similar to conventional materials.
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