Synthesis of Information Related to Highway Practices. Topic 50-01. Improving Geotechnical Design Efficiency and Reducing Construction Uncertainties and Delays with Advanced Geophysical Methods

In 2006, the National Academies published NCHRP Synthesis 357: Use of Geophysics for Transportation Projects which identified benefits and challenges of using geophysical methods in transportation. Some of the obstacles identified by the study were recognizing appropriate applications and conditions, defining the investigation’s scope, obtaining adequate data, and objective interpretation by qualified professionals. Issues that the study identified included improving education and training, as well as the need for standards and training resources. Geophysical methods and techniques, as well as computing software and equipment, have advanced greatly over the past decade. The objective of this synthesis is to provide an updated matrix of geophysics techniques for each application, as well as to provide background, and training resources for geophysical methods that have consistently yielded quantifiable value through improvements to design efficiencies and reductions in construction risks. Special attention should focus on how agencies are using the following methods: SASW, MASW, ReMi. The synthesis would help identify the tools available and make this type of exploration method less intimidating to agencies. The scope does not include a comprehensive collection of data on standards and specifications. Information will be gathered by literature review which identifies the most relevant examples, techniques and conditions under which consistent results were achieved. A survey of the state DOTs will also be conducted. Five case examples that highlight current effective practices and lessons learned will also be included in the synthesis. Knowledge gaps and suggestion for research to address those gaps will be identified.


  • English


  • Status: Proposed
  • Funding: $45000
  • Contract Numbers:

    Project 20-05, Topic 50-01

  • Sponsor Organizations:

    National Cooperative Highway Research Program

    Transportation Research Board
    500 Fifth Street, NW
    Washington, DC  United States  20001

    American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO)

    444 North Capitol Street, NW
    Washington, DC  United States  20001

    Federal Highway Administration

    1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
    Washington, DC  United States  20590
  • Project Managers:

    Garcia-Colberg, Mariela

  • Start Date: 20180806
  • Expected Completion Date: 0
  • Actual Completion Date: 0

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01668994
  • Record Type: Research project
  • Source Agency: Transportation Research Board
  • Contract Numbers: Project 20-05, Topic 50-01
  • Files: TRB, RiP
  • Created Date: May 14 2018 3:03PM