Volume 30, Issue 2 (March 2007)
Comprehensive Wave Propagation Model to Improve TDR Interpretations for Geotechnical Applications
Time domain reflectometry (TDR) is becoming an important monitoring technique for various geotechnical problems. Better data interpretation and new developments rely on the ability to accurately model the TDR waveform, especially when long cables are used. This study developed an efficient, complete, and general-purpose TDR model that accounts for all wave phenomena including multiple reflection, dielectric dispersion, and cable resistance all together. Inverse analysis based on the TDR wave propagation model is proposed to calibrate the TDR system parameters and determine the TDR parameter that changes with the physical parameter to be monitored. Calibration of TDR cable and data interpretations for various geotechnical applications were demonstrated with laboratory experiments. The excellent match between the simulated and measured waveforms validates the TDR wave propagation model. The results show that the proposed numerical procedure is a relatively simple, efficient and high-resolution tool for probe design, parametric studies, data interpretation, and inverse analyses. This study should provide a sound theoretical foundation for further TDR developments in geotechnical monitoring.