The Beacon (Bentonite mechanical evolution) project was set up to study the performance of inhomogeneous bentonite barriers in the context of disposal of high level radioactive waste and spent fuel in geological repositories across Europe. A key aspect of the performance of bentonite barriers is how the bentonite evolves from its installed state to become a fully functioning long-term barrier. A significant number of experiments have been carried out using bentonite prior to and during the Beacon project. Some of these studies have considered the mechanical behaviour of bentonite, others have collected data on mechanical behaviour but have not analysed the data.
The purpose of this database is to collate available experimental information that could help advance understanding of the mechanical behaviour of bentonite. The database has been designed and populated as a collaborative effort between the participants of the Beacon project. There are many experiments listed in the database, at a range of scales (from bench top laboratory experiments to full scale field experiments), a number of which were designed specifically for studies of bentonite homogenisation. The database contains information on the type of bentonite considered in the experiments, the boundary conditions and heterogeneities within the experiments and also the range of measurements taken in the experiments. Further information about each experiment can be found in the linked PDF forms, including original references.