ASTM D4553 - 18

    Standard Test Method for Determining In Situ Creep Characteristics of Rock

    Active Standard ASTM D4553 | Developed by Subcommittee: D18.12

    Book of Standards Volume: 04.08


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    Significance and Use

    5.1 Results of this test method are used to predict time-dependent deformation characteristics of a rock mass resulting from loading. It is a test that may be required depending on rock type or anticipated loads, or both.

    5.2 This test method may be useful in structural design analysis where loading is applied over an extensive period.

    5.3 This test method is normally performed at ambient temperature in the field, but equipment can be modified or substituted for operations at other temperatures.

    5.4 Results of this test method may be useful in verifying laboratory creep data and structural mathematical modeling analyses.

    5.5 Creep characteristics are determined under a nonuniform state of stress within the rock mass underneath the plate.

    5.6 If during a field investigation, time-dependent characteristics are detected, then an in situ creep test shall be performed.

    Note 1: The quality of the result produced by this standard is dependent on the competence of the personnel performing it, and the suitability of the equipment and facilities used. Agencies that meet the criteria of Practice D3740 are generally considered capable of competent and objective testing/sampling/inspection/etc. Users of this standard are cautioned that compliance with Practice D3740 does not in itself assure reliable results. Reliable results depend on many factors; Practice D3740 provides a means of evaluating some of those factors.

    1. Scope

    1.1 This test method covers the preparation, equipment, test procedure, and data documentation for determining in situ creep characteristics of a rock mass using a rigid plate loading method.

    1.2 This test method is designed to be conducted in an adit or small underground chamber; however, with suitable modifications, this test could be conducted at the surface.

    1.3 The test is usually conducted parallel or perpendicular to the anticipated axis of thrust, as dictated by the design load or other orientations, based upon the application.

    1.4 Flexible plate apparatus can be used if the anticipated creep displacement is within the tolerance of the travel of the flat jacks.

    1.5 Units—The values stated in inch-pound units are to be regarded as standard. The values given in parentheses are mathematical conversions to SI units that are provided for information only and are not considered standard. Reporting of test results in units other than inch-pound shall not be regarded as nonconformance with this standard.

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

    1.6 All observed and calculated values shall conform to the guidelines for significant digits and rounding established in Practice D6026, unless superseded by this test method.

    1.6.1 For purposes of comparing a measured or calculated value(s) with specified limits, the measured or calculated value(s) shall be rounded to the nearest decimal of significant digits in the specified limit.

    1.6.2 The procedures used to specify how data are collected/recorded and calculated in the standard are regarded as the industry standard. In addition, they are representative of the significant digits that generally should be retained. The procedures used do not consider material variation, purpose for obtaining the data, special purpose studies, or any considerations for the user’s objectives; and it is common practice to increase or reduce significant digits of reported data to be commensurate with these considerations. It is beyond the scope of these test methods to consider significant digits used in analysis methods for engineering data.

    1.7 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, health, and environmental practices and determine the applicability of regulatory limitations prior to use. For specific precaution statements, see Section 8.

    1.8 This international standard was developed in accordance with internationally recognized principles on standardization established in the Decision on Principles for the Development of International Standards, Guides and Recommendations issued by the World Trade Organization Technical Barriers to Trade (TBT) Committee.


    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

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

    D4394 Test Method for Determining In Situ Modulus of Deformation of Rock Mass Using Rigid Plate Loading Method

    D4403 Practice for Extensometers Used in Rock

    D4879 Guide for Geotechnical Mapping of Large Underground Openings in Rock

    D6026 Practice for Using Significant Digits in Geotechnical Data


    ICS Code

    ICS Number Code 07.040 (Astronomy. Geodesy. Geography); 93.020 (Earthworks. Excavations. Foundation construction. Underground works)

    UNSPSC Code

    UNSPSC Code


    Referencing This Standard
    Link Here
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    DOI: 10.1520/D4553-18

    Citation Format

    ASTM D4553-18, Standard Test Method for Determining In Situ Creep Characteristics of Rock, ASTM International, West Conshohocken, PA, 2018, www.astm.org

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