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Free Webinar - Best Practices in Subsurface Investigations and Soil and Rock Testing

March 04, 2019
11:30 AM - 1:00 PM
Registration Deadline: March 02, 2019
11:55 PM
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Intertek - PSI
4960 Vulcan Ave
Columbus, OH 43228
Venue website

  • Offered for free to Central Ohio Section ASCE Members
  • Seating is limited to the first 15 people
  • Bring your own lunch


Sponsored by ASCE Continuing Education and the Geo-Institute (G-I).


Purpose and Background

The technical topics of subsurface investigations, soil and rock testing and perhaps most importantly the selection of geo-materials properties for design and construction are the subject of this webinar. The criticality of this project phase for all civil engineering features cannot be overstressed. Regretfully, the current state of practice often results in project team members questioning the value added for the resources expended. This webinar presents and recommends best practices for these topics focused on the Load and Resistance Factor Design platform and surface transportation features. These best practices may also be easily and appropriately applied to all other design platforms (allowable stress), other codes and guidelines, and other civil and construction industries (energy, buildings).

All civil engineering facilities require a subsurface investigation program and soil and rock testing in order to properly select, design and construct the project components that are geotechnically related. This fact is true regardless of the design platform used ASD, LFD or LRFD. Compared to both ASD and LFD, the LRFD platform offers a rational framework for appropriate application of subsurface investigation information in the design and construction of geotechnical features. The webinar series uses the 6th Edition of the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) LRFD Bridge and Structures Specifications as a basis for the technical content. Section 10.4 of the AASHTO LRFD Specifications provides, for the first time in single location, coordinated and detailed guidance on this very important topic. This guidance recognizes the need for project specific judgment based on local geologic conditions and specific project constraints and requirements. Hence, the guidance provided within the AASHTO LRFD Specifications, while specific in recommendation and outlining a minimum standard of care, is not intended for use nor should it be used as a cookbook. Furthermore, although the AASHTO LRFD specifications do not specifically assign quantitative credit for an adequate or Best Practices application of the recommended and suggested procedures, the specification guidance does set a minimum standard of care that must be satisfied for validation of the various resistance factors for different geotechnical features. In other words, an inadequate subsurface investigation in terms of quality or quantity invalidates the recommended resistance factors and could lead to overly conservative or unconservative project recommendations.

Learning Outcomes

Upon the conclusion of this webinar, you will be able to:

  • Use proper terminology related to subsurface explorations, soil and rock testing and selection of geomaterial properties
  • Develop a minimum suggested subsurface investigation program for a specific geotechnical feature application
  • Determine appropriate soil and rock tests for specific applications
  • Discuss correct approach to summarize, interpret and evaluate test data
  • Understand the range of geotechnical property variability and be able to consider this in specifying a minimum number of tests
  • Be able to apply the AASHTO subsurface exploration and soil and rock testing guidance to the design and construction of geotechnical features

Webinar Benefits

  • Learn basics of LRFD related to planning and use of subsurface investigation information and test results
  • Continue building on the knowledge gained from previous LRFD webinars
  • Examine the possibilities and benefits of improved communication between geotechnical and structural specialists related to subsurface investigations and test results for geo-materials


Intended Audience

This webinar will benefit geotechnical and structural specialists and general civil engineering designers involved in the specification, conduct, interpretation and application of subsurface exploration programs and soil and rock testing data. Knowledge of LRFD basics is desirable and knowledge in geotechnical principles is a prerequisite. The webinar will benefit professionals with 0-25 years of practical experience in design and analysis of earth retaining structures, shallow foundations and deep drilled and driven deep foundations.

See the ASCE website for more info.[update link]

The Central Ohio Section of ASCE sponsors free continuing education webinars as a service to our members. These webinars are produced by ASCE and normally cost $250 or $300 for ASCE members. However, the Central Ohio Section is paying the registration fee and inviting any interested section members to attend for free. Just RSVP by the deadline. Seating is limited, so do not delay.

The Central Ohio Section is partnering with ASCE to promote live and on-demand webinars. Use the Promo Code WEBCENOHSEC when signing up and ASCE will provide a portion of the registration fee to the Section to use toward more free webinars. Thank you for your support!

ASCE’s live webinars provide cost-effective training for large and small groups. Click HERE for a complete list of available live webinars.

ASCE’s on-demand webinars provide real-world knowledge and convenient delivery to fit your demanding schedule. Click HERE for a complete list of available on-demand webinars.



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