Standard Active Last Updated: Aug 05, 2020 Track Document
ASTM D5778-20

Standard Test Method for Electronic Friction Cone and Piezocone Penetration Testing of Soils

Standard Test Method for Electronic Friction Cone and Piezocone Penetration Testing of Soils D5778-20 ASTM|D5778-20|en-US Standard Test Method for Electronic Friction Cone and Piezocone Penetration Testing of Soils Standard new BOS Vol. 04.08 Committee D18
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Significance and Use

5.1 Tests performed using this test method provide a detailed record of cone tip resistance, which is useful for evaluation of site stratigraphy, engineering properties, homogeneity and depth to firm layers, voids or cavities, and other discontinuities. The use of a friction sleeve and pore water pressure element can provide an estimate of soil classification, and correlations with engineering properties of soils. When properly performed at suitable sites, the test provides a rapid means for determining subsurface conditions.

5.2 This test method provides data used for estimating engineering properties of soil intended to help with the design and construction of earthworks, the foundations for structures, and the behavior of soils under static and dynamic loads.

5.3 This method tests the soil in situ and soil samples are not obtained during the test. The interpretation of the results from this test method provides estimates of the types of soil penetrated. Engineers may obtain soil samples from parallel borings for correlation purposes but prior information or experience may preclude the need for borings.

Note 2: The quality of the results produced by this standard is dependent on the competence of the personal performing the test, 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 and Practice D3740 provides a means of evaluating some of those factors.


1.1 This test method covers the procedure for determining the resistance of a friction cone or a piezocone as it is advanced into subsurface soils at a steady rate.

1.2 This test method applies to electronic friction cones and does not include hydraulic, pneumatic, or free-fall cones, although many of the procedural requirements herein could apply to those cones. Also, offshore/marine Cone Penetration Testing (CPT) systems may have procedural differences because of the difficulties of testing in those environments (for example, tidal variations, salt water and waves). Field tests using mechanical-type cones are covered elsewhere by Test Method D3441.

1.3 This test method can be used to determine pore water pressures developed during the penetration when using a properly saturated piezocone. Pore water pressure dissipation, after a push, can also be monitored for correlation to time rate of consolidation and permeability.

1.4 Additional sensors, such as inclinometer, seismic (Test Methods D7400), resistivity, electrical conductivity, dielectric, and temperature sensors, may be included in the cone to provide additional information. The use of an inclinometer is recommended since it will provide information on potentially damaging situations during the sounding process.

1.5 CPT data can be used to interpret subsurface stratigraphy, and through use of site specific correlations, they can provide data on engineering properties of soils intended for use in design and construction of earthworks and foundations for structures.

1.6 Units—The values stated in SI units are to be regarded as standard. No other units of measurement are included in this standard. Reporting of test results in units other than SI shall not be regarded as nonconformance with this test method

1.7 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.

1.7.1 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.

1.8 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.

1.9 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.

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Book of Standards Volume: 04.08
Developed by Subcommittee: D18.02
Pages: 17
DOI: 10.1520/D5778-20
ICS Code: 13.080.20