CPT-Based Probabilistic Soil Characterization and Classification

ÇETİN K. Ö., Ozan C.

JOURNAL OF GEOTECHNICAL AND GEOENVIRONMENTAL ENGINEERING, vol.135, no.1, pp.84-107, 2009 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier


Due to lack of soil sampling during conventional cone penetration testing, it is necessary to characterize and classify soils based on tip and sleeve friction values as well as pore pressure induced during and after penetration. Currently available semiempirical methods exhibit a significant variability in the estimation of soil type. Within the confines of this paper it is attempted to present a new probabilistic cone penetration test (CPT)-based soil characterization and classification methodology, which addresses the uncertainties intrinsic to the problem. For this purpose, a database composed of normalized corrected cone tip resistance (q(t,1,net)), normalized friction ratio (F(R)), fines content (FC), liquid limit (LL), plasticity index (PI), and soil type based on the unified soil classification system was complied. Soil classification was performed by laboratory testing of the standard penetration test disturbed samples retrieved from the boreholes within mostly 2 m of each CPT hole. The resulting database was probabilistically assessed through Bayesian updating methodology allowing full and consistent representation of relevant uncertainties, including (1) model imperfection; (2) statistical uncertainty; and (3) inherent variability. As a conclusion, different sets of FC, LL, PI, and A-line boundary curves along with a new CPT-based, simplified soil classification scheme are proposed in the q(t,1,net) and F(R) domain. Probabilistic uses of the proposed models are illustrated through a set of illustrative examples.