ASTM D6031 / D6031M - 96(2010)e1

    Standard Test Method for Logging In Situ Moisture Content and Density of Soil and Rock by the Nuclear Method in Horizontal, Slanted, and Vertical Access Tubes

    Active Standard ASTM D6031 / D6031M | Developed by Subcommittee: D18.21

    Book of Standards Volume: 04.09


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    Significance and Use

    This test method is useful as a repeatable, nondestructive technique to monitor in-place density and moisture of soil and rock along lengthy sections of horizontal, slanted, and vertical access holes or tubes. With proper calibration in accordance with Annex A1, this test method can be used to quantify changes in density and moisture content of soil and rock.

    This test method is used in vadose zone monitoring, for performance assessment of engineered barriers at waste facilities, and for research related to monitoring the movement of liquids (water solutions and hydrocarbons) through soil and rock. The nondestructive nature of the test allows repetitive measurements at a site and statistical analysis of results.

    The fundamental assumptions inherent in this test method are that the dry bulk density of the test material is constant and that the response to fast neutrons and gammaray energy associated with soil and liquid chemistry is constant.

    1. Scope

    1.1 This test method covers collection and comparison of logs of thermalized-neutron counts and back-scattered gamma counts along horizontal or vertical air-filled access tubes.

    1.2 The in situ water content in mass per unit volume and the density in mass per unit volume of soil and rock at positions or in intervals along the length of an access tube are calculated by comparing the thermal neutron count rate and gamma count rates respectively to previously established calibration data.

    1.3 The values stated in either inch-pound units or SI units [presented in brackets] are to be regarded separately as standard. The values stated in each system may not be exact equivalents; therefore, each system shall be used independently of the other. Combining values from the two systems may result in non-conformance with the standard.

    1.3.1 The gravitational system of inch-pound units is used when dealing with inch-pound units. In this system, the pound (lbf) represents a unit of force (weight), while the unit for mass is slugs. The rationalized slug unit is not given, unless dynamic (F = ma) calculations are involved.

    1.4 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. For specific hazards, see Section 6.


    2. Referenced Documents (purchase separately) The documents listed below are referenced within the subject standard but are not provided as part of the standard.

    ASTM Standards

    D1452 Practice for Soil Exploration and Sampling by Auger Borings

    D1586 Test Method for Penetration Test (SPT) and Split-Barrel Sampling of Soils

    D1587 Practice for Thin-Walled Tube Sampling of Soils for Geotechnical Purposes

    D2113 Practice for Rock Core Drilling and Sampling of Rock for Site Investigation

    D2216 Test Methods for Laboratory Determination of Water (Moisture) Content of Soil and Rock by Mass

    D2922 Test Methods for Density of Soil and Soil-Aggregate in Place by Nuclear Methods (Shallow Depth)

    D2937 Test Method for Density of Soil in Place by the Drive-Cylinder Method

    D3017 Test Method for Water Content of Soil and Rock in Place by Nuclear Methods (Shallow Depth)

    D3550 Practice for Thick Wall, Ring-Lined, Split Barrel, Drive Sampling of Soils

    D4428/D4428M Test Methods for Crosshole Seismic Testing

    D4564 Test Method for Density and Unit Weight of Soil in Place by the Sleeve Method

    D5195 Test Method for Density of Soil and Rock In-Place at Depths Below Surface by Nuclear Methods

    D5220 Test Method for Water Mass per Unit Volume of Soil and Rock In-Place by the Neutron Depth Probe Method


    ICS Code

    ICS Number Code 71.040.50 (Physicochemical methods of analysis)

    UNSPSC Code

    UNSPSC Code 11111501(Soil)


    DOI: 10.1520/D6031_D6031M-96R10E01

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