Characterisation of subsurface spatial variability using a cone resistivity penetrometer

Hyung Koo Yoon, Soon Hyuck Jung, Jong Sub Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Citations (Scopus)


The subsurface spatial variation in clay soils, such as thin-layered sand seams, affects the mechanical strength and electrical resistivity. The objective of this study is the development and application of cone resistivity penetrometer (CRP), which measures the cone tip resistance, sleeve friction, and electrical resistivity to evaluate the subsurface spatial variability. The electrical resistivity is measured at the cone tip to increase its resolution. Two outer diameters of the cone resistivity penetrometers (CRPs) are developed: D=10mm CRP with a projected area of 0.78cm2 and D=15mm CRP with a projected area of 1.76cm2. The cone tip resistance is effectively separated using a friction sleeve. Strain gauges are used to measure the mechanical strength, and coaxial type electrodes monitor the electrical resistivity. The application tests in the laboratory are conducted using layered soils and saturated sands. In addition, the penetration tests in the field are carried out and compared with the standard piezocone test. The penetration tests show that the soil layers and the density changes are clearly detected by the electrical resistivity and mechanical strength. Field tests show that CRP clearly evaluates the subsurface profile. This study suggests that CRP may be a useful technique for the evaluation of subsurface spatial variability during penetration testing.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1064-1071
Number of pages8
JournalSoil Dynamics and Earthquake Engineering
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 2011 Jul


  • Cone tip resistance
  • Densification
  • Electrical resistivity
  • Sand seam
  • Sleeve friction
  • Spatial variability

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Geotechnical Engineering and Engineering Geology
  • Soil Science


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