Description: When cone penetrometer testing (CPT) technology is used with in-situ sensors and probes to characterize subsurface conditions in environmental investigations, each sensor must be calibrated with high quality, site specific data to establish essential interpretation criteria. Mechanical, geophysical, and chemical sensor data collected for a site in South Carolina without such controls were misleading. Core logs obtained subsequently had major lithologic discrepancies with the soil classification based on the CPT sensor data. In addition, detailed core sampling and laboratory analysis showed that the sensor data on chemical contaminants included false positive and false negative results. In contrast, for a site in Nebraska, CPT data calibrated with high quality site controls provided a detailed interpretation of subsurface conditions relevant to contaminant fate and transport. On the basis of the work in Nebraska, Argonne scientists are continuing to develop criteria to improve the interpretation of complex subsurface stratigraphy.
Date: September 1, 1997
Creator: Walker, J.L.; Rose, C.M.; Armstrong, S.C. & Burton, J.C.
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