ASTM D5220-92(1997)

    Standard Test Method for Water Content of Soil and Rock In-Place by the Neutron Depth Probe Method


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    1. Scope

    1.1 This test method covers the calculation of the water content of soil and rock by thermalization or slowing of fast neutrons where the neutron source and the thermal neutron detector are placed at the desired depth in the bored hole lined by an access tube (see Note 1).

    1.2 The water content, in mass per unit volume of the material under test, is calculated by comparing the thermal neutron count rate with previously established calibration data (see Annex A1).

    1.3 A precision statement has not been developed for this standard at this time. Therefore, this standard should not be used for acceptance or rejection of a material for purchasing purposes unless correlated to other accepted ASTM methods.

    1.4 The values expressed in SI units are regarded as the standard. The inch-pound units given in parentheses may be approximate and are provided for information only.

    1.5 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. Specific hazards are given in Section 7.


    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

    D653 Terminology Relating to Soil, Rock, and Contained Fluids

    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

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

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

    D3740 Practice for Minimum Requirements for Agencies Engaged in Testing and/or Inspection of Soil and Rock as Used in Engineering Design and Construction

    D4428/D4428M Test Methods for Crosshole Seismic Testing

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

    D6026 Practice for Using Significant Digits in Geotechnical Data

    D6938 Test Method for In-Place Density and Water Content of Soil and Soil-Aggregate by Nuclear Methods (Shallow Depth)


    ICS Code

    ICS Number Code 13.080.40 (Hydrological properties of soil)

    UNSPSC Code

    UNSPSC Code 11111501(Soil)


    Referencing This Standard
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    DOI: 10.1520/D5220-92R97

    Citation Format

    ASTM D5220-92(1997), Standard Test Method for Water Content of Soil and Rock In-Place by the Neutron Depth Probe Method, ASTM International, West Conshohocken, PA, 2002, www.astm.org

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