Hydraulic conductivity measurement from on-the-fly uCPT sounding and from VisCPT

Dae Sung Lee, Derek Elsworth, Roman Hryciw

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


Detailed profiles of hydraulic conductivity are recovered from the deployment of direct-push permeameters at the Geohydrologic Experimental and Monitoring Site, Kansas. Measurements with thin tapered tips, and with standard cone penetration test (uCPT) tips, show only minor differences, suggesting that tip-local disturbance effects are small, and that routine uCPT measurements are therefore representative of pristine conditions. Permeameter measurements are correlated against closely deployed uCPT measurements, estimates of hydraulic conductivity from uCPT sounding correlations, and from grain size correlations derived from both vision CPT (VisCPT) and from cone metrics. On-the-fly evaluations of hydraulic conductivity require that the tip-local pressure field is both steady and partially drained. Continuous penetration is shown to yield pore pressures sufficiently close to steady to enable conductivities to be directly determined. Cone metrics of cone resistance, sleeve friction, and pore pressure ratio are shown to be sufficient to discriminate between partially drained and undrained behavior, and therefore to define the permissible regime where conductivities may be determined from uCPT sounding data. Estimates of hydraulic conductivities from uCPT sounding data are shown to correlate with independently measured magnitudes of hydraulic conductivity recovered using the permeameter tests. However, most of hydraulic conductivities from the permeameter tests (4.5 cm length screen) are underpredicted, suggesting that storage effects, the inability to reach a steady state, or the effects of dilation may influence the response. Profiles of hydraulic conductivities evaluated from the on-the-fly method also correlate well with the permeameter measurements. Predictions from soil classification and from VisCPT methods are also capable of estimating conductivities, with soil classifications giving the closest correlations of these two for this particular suite of data.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1720-1729
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Geotechnical and Geoenvironmental Engineering
Issue number12
StatePublished - 2008

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geotechnical Engineering and Engineering Geology
  • Environmental Science(all)


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