Different Methodologies for Soil Testing

The importance of soil testing in various construction projects lies on its ability to identify the types and depths of the foundation that will be needed for the structure that will be built. This testing will help to evaluate the physical and chemical characteristics of soil and its fitness for construction. More often than not, such kind of environmental investigation services would include boring into the soil, extracting samples, and taking them to the laboratory in order to study their specific properties. In the rest of this post I will share with you some of the most common soil testing techniques that are employed in today’s time, including some of their pros and cons.

Cone Penetration Test

This in-situ is considered to be the most accurate and most reliable method for testing the different properties of soil. It was developed in Holland in the 1950s and has since then grown in terms of popularity all over the world because of the reliability of the findings from such testing method. It involves the measurement of the resistance and friction of soil through the use of a cone shaped instrument that is pushed at a constant rate of speed on the soil. Some of the pros of this technique in soil testing include its ability to provide information on the properties of the soil matrix and details regarding natural soil variability in a geological unit. However, it has the drawback of not being able to provide details on soil behavior when it is subjected under cyclic loading conditions.

Percolation Test

This is another component of environmental investigation services with the goal of being able to help evaluate soil properties. Generally speaking, the main purpose of this methodology is to determine the absorption rate of soil through the simulation of the conditions of a septic system. This is going to be an important test to be conducted to be given a permit for the construction of a septic tank or soakage system as this will determine if the soil has acceptable qualities for effluent disposal. If in case the test reveals unacceptable results, there are other alternatives you can consider, such as in the case of aerobic wastewater treatment system.

Soil Contamination Testing

This is another important and common type of soil testing. As the name implies, the main goal is to basically determine the possible presence of contamination in soil, which is primarily important when planning to determine water supply from the ground. Before a drilling company can put up a groundwater well, this will be needed to make sure the soil is free from contamination and that it will not have a negative impact on the quality of water in one way or another. Even in tasks as simple as gardening, soil contamination tests should be performed to evaluate the health of the soil not only for ensuring the growth of the plants, but also to be confident that the plants grown can be eaten safely without fear of being contaminated.


Environmental & Geotechnical Drilling Services Pty Ltd
38 Thorn St.,
Pennant HillsNSW2120
Australia

(02) 9119 0576

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