Master of Science in Civil Engineering (MSCE)


Civil and Environmental Engineering

Document Type



With the coming changes from an empirical to mechanistic-empirical pavement design, it becomes essential to move towards changing the quality control/quality assurance (QC/QA) procedures of compacted materials from a unit weight-based criterion to a stiffness/strength based criterion. The non-destructive in-situ tests such as Geogauge, Dynamic Cone Penetrometer (DCP), and Light Falling Weight Deflectometer (LFWD) can be used as effective tools in the assessment of subsurface conditions and in evaluating the stiffness of pavement materials and embankment. This thesis evaluates the potential use of these three devices to reliably measure the stiffness characteristics of highway materials for possible application in the QC/QA procedures during and after the construction of pavement layers and embankments. To achieve this, field tests were conducted on highway sections selected from different projects in Louisiana State. In addition, six test sections and three trench sections were constructed and tested at the LTRC Accelerated Load Facility (ALF) site for testing. The field tests included conducting Geogauge, LFWD, DCP tests and standard tests such as the Plate Load Test (PLT) and Falling Weight Deflectometer (FWD) test. The California Bearing Ratio (CBR) laboratory tests were also conducted on samples collected during field tests. Statistical analysis was conducted to correlate the measurements obtained from the three investigated devices and those obtained from the standard tests. Good correlations were obtained between the measurements of the investigated devices and the standard tests. Laboratory tests were also conducted to evaluate the influence depth of the Geogauge and LFWD devices. The results of laboratory tests indicated that the average influence depth for the Geogauge and LFWD devices are about 200 mm and 280 mm, respectively.



Document Availability at the Time of Submission

Release the entire work immediately for access worldwide.

Committee Chair

Murad Abu-Farsakh