ASTM-D5778 Historical Revision Information
Standard Test Method for Electronic Friction Cone and Piezocone Penetration Testing of Soils

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Standard Test Method for Electronic Friction Cone and Piezocone Penetration Testing of Soils


1.1 This test method covers the procedure for determining the resistance to penetration of a conical pointed penetrometer as it is advanced into subsurface soils at a slow, steady rate.

1.2 This test method is also used to determine the frictional resistance of a cylindrical sleeve located behind the conical point as it is advanced through subsurface soils at a slow, steady rate.

1.3 This test method applies to friction-cone penetrometers of the electronic type.

1.4 This test method can be used to determine pore pressure development during push of a piezocone penetrometer. Pore pressure dissipation, after a push, can also be monitored for correlation to soil compressibility and permeability.

1.5 Other sensors such as inclinometer, seismic, and temperature sensors may be included in the penetrometer to provide useful information. The use of an inclinometer is highly recommended since it will provide information on potentially damaging situations during the sounding process.

1.6 Cone penetration test data can be used to interpret subsurface stratigraphy, and through use of site specific correlations it can provide data on engineering properties of soils intended for use in design and construction of earthworks and foundations for structures.

1.7 The values stated in SI units are to be regarded as standard. Within Section 13 on Calculations, SI metric units are considered the standard. Other commonly used units such as the inch-pound system are shown in brackets. The various data reported should be displayed in mutually compatible units as agreed to by the client or user. Cone tip projected area is commonly referred to in centimetres for convenience. The values stated in each system are not equivalents; therefore, each system must be used independently of the other.

Note 1--This test method does not include hydraulic or pneumatic penetrometers. However, many of the procedural requirements herein could apply to those penetrometers.

1.8 This standard does not purport to address all of the safety concerns, if any, associated with its use. It is the responsibility of the user of this standard to establish appropriate safety and health practices and determine the applicability of regulatory limitations prior to use.

Significance and Use

Tests performed using this test method provide a detailed record of cone resistance which is useful for evaluation of site stratigraphy, homogeneity and depth to firm layers, voids or cavities, and other discontinuities. The use of a friction sleeve and pore pressure element can provide an estimate of soil classification, and correlations with engineering properties of soils. When properly performed at suitable sites, the test provides a rapid means for determining subsurface conditions.

This test method provides data used for estimating engineering properties of soil intended to help with the design and construction of earthworks, the foundations for structures, and the behavior of soils under static and dynamic loads.

This test method tests the soil in situ and soil samples are not obtained. The interpretation of the results from this test method provides estimates of the types of soil penetrated. Engineers may obtain soil samples from parallel borings for correlation purposes but prior information or experience may preclude the need for borings.


cone penetration test; cone penetrometer; explorations; penetration tests; piezocone; soil investigations; ICS Number Code 13.080.20 (Physical properties of soil)

To find similar documents by ASTM Volume:

04.08 (Soil and Rock (I): D420 - D5876)

To find similar documents by classification:

13.080.20 (Physical properties of soils)

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Document Number


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Publication Date

Sept. 10, 1995

Document Type

Test Method

Page Count

14 pages

Committee Number