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Common problems with Cone Penetration Test (CPT) data – a reference guide for CPT Practitioners and Geotechnical Designers

​Cone Penetration Testing (CPT) has become an increasingly popular method for characterising soils due to low cost, almost continuous data with depth, and established and robust correlations with soil properties, including liquefaction susceptibility.

01 Jun 2015
Pascale, G. De, Cresswell, J., Cheng, C., May, E., Borella, J., Twiss, A., Holtrigter, M., Thorp, A., Scott, J., Fairclough, T. and Ashfield, D.


The CPT method is based on pushing an instrumented cone (with the tip facing down) into the ground at a controlled rate measuring tip resistance, sleeve friction, and often porewater pressure. The CPT method was first developed in Europe in the 1930s with the first electric cone developed by Fugro in 1965, the size and shape of which is the foundation for all contemporary CPT cones. The addition of the pore water sensor (piezocones), which enables the measurement of in-situ porewater pressure, was introduced in the 1970s increasing the overall utility of the method. In contemporary New Zealand, CPT has proven to be a critical tool for characterising soil profiles and determining liquefaction risk in Christchurch following the Canterbury Earthquake Sequence of 2010-2012.


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