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Empirical correlations between shear wave velocity and penetration resistance for ground shaking assessments
Nilsun Hasancebi Æ Resat Ulusay
Received: 30 March 2006 / Accepted: 7 July 2006 / Published online: 29 August 2006 Ó Springer-Verlag 2006
Abstract Prediction of the ground shaking response at soil sites requires knowledge of the soil, expressed in terms of shear wave velocity. Although it is preferable to measure this dynamic soil parameter in situ, this is often not economic at all locations. Existing correlations between shear wave velocity and penetration resistance have been assessed in this study and compared with correlations with SPT values obtained based on geotechnical and geoseismic data collected from a ﬁrst-degree earthquake zone in Turkey. The results obtained support the ﬁndings of earlier studies that blow-count is a signiﬁcant parameter in these correlations while type of soil has no important inﬂuence. The regression equations developed in this study compare well with most of the previous equations and exhibit good prediction performance. It is noted that better correlations are obtained when uncorrected blow-counts are used. Keywords Correlation equation Æ Geotechnical borehole Æ Seismic refraction Æ Shear wave velocity Æ Standard penetration test Æ Turkey ´ ´ ` Resume La prevision de la reponse d’un site a une ´ ´ ´ sollicitation sismique necessite des connaissances sur le ` sol, relatives en particulier a la vitesse de propagation ´ ´ des ondes de cisaillement. Il est preferable de mesurer ` ce parametre de dynamique des sols in situ. Cependant ceci n’est pas toujours possible en raison de la conﬁg-
´ uration du site et de contraintes economiques. Des ´ correlations entre la vitesse de propagation des ondes ´ ´ ´ ´ de cisaillement et des donnees penetrometriques ont ´ ´ ´ ´ ´ ´ ete evaluees et comparees avec des correlations entre la vitesse de propagation des ondes de cisaillement et ´ ` ` des donnees SPT, ces dernieres obtenues a partir de ´ ´ donnees geotechniques et sismiques issues d’une zone ´ ´ de forte sismicite en Turquie. Les resultats obtenus ´ ´dentes etudes montrant que les ´ confortent de prece ´ ` donnees SPT apportent un parametre signiﬁcatif, tanˆ dis que le type de sol ne joue pas un role important ´ ´ ´ pour les correlations etablies. Des equations de ´ ´ ´ ´ ´ regression ont ete etablies et permettent de prevoir la ´ ponse d’un site a une sollicitation sismique. ` re Mots cles Equation de regression Æ Sondage ´ ´ ´ geotechnique Æ Refraction sismique Æ Vitesse de propagation des ondes de cisaillement Æ Essai SPT Æ Turquie
Introduction It has been recognized for a very long time that earthquake damage is generally larger over soft sediments than on ﬁrm bedrock outcrops. This is particularly important because most urban settlements have occurred along river valleys over such young and soft surface deposits. For this reason, particular consideration is paid to the effect of local site conditions when assessing ground motion characteristics for the seismic design of buildings and other structures. Shear modulus, damping ratio and shear wave velocity proﬁles are important input parameters in site response analysis. Prediction of the ground shaking response at soil sites
N. Hasancebi Æ R. Ulusay (&) Department of Geological Engineering, Hacettepe University, Beytepe, Ankara 06800, Turkey e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
a reliable correlation between Vs and penetration resistance would be a considerable advantage. Based on the statistical assessments and taking into account the type of soil. laboratory soil Fig. Ulusay requires a knowledge of the stiffness of the soil. For this reason. a site with recorded high seismicity at Yenisehir. a series of empirical equations for the prediction of Vs from SPT-N were developed and compared with those suggested in previous studies in order to evaluate the prediction capability of the equations. 2). expressed in terms of shear wave velocity (Vs). The basement rocks seen in the southern part of the site consist of schists and 123 . reducing the number of ﬁeld veriﬁcations required. While it is preferable to determine Vs directly from ﬁeld tests. General setting of the study site Geology and seismotectonics Yenisehir town is located within an alluvial basin which is surrounded by ridges both to the north and south (Fig. For this purpose. 1 Location map of the study site classiﬁcation tests. 1). the variation of shear wave velocity measured by seismic refraction and SPT blow-count (SPT-N) was investigated and new correlations have been developed for estimating the shear wave velocity. the use of borehole data from the previous work in the study site and statistical assessments. Hasancebi and R. The study site is geologically represented by the basement rocks of pre-Neogene age and Neogene and Quaternary deposits. was selected. which is measured at small strain levels by in situ seismic methods.204 N. The investigation programme included SPT borings at different locations. In this study. founded on an alluvial plain located in the Marmara Region of Turkey (Fig. which is an integral part of a research study on soil ampliﬁcation (Hasancebi 2005). it is often not economically feasible at all locations. seismic refraction studies.
The tests were conducted in accordance with the methods given by 123 . The 1999 Kocaeli earthquake. 2004) and Geophysical Engineering Department of Ankara University. 9 extended to 30. geoseismic investigations and laboratory testing In the present and future settlement areas of Yenisehir. The Neogene deposits which appear on the gentle slopes at the north and south consist predominantly of loosely cemented conglomerate. Based on the data from the records of the boreholes drilled by the State Hydraulic Works (DSI). It is well known that the average shear wave velocity in the upper 30 m of the ground is an important factor for ground characterization (Borcherdt 1994. The southern strand of the North Anatolian Fault Zone (NAFZ) and the Bursa and Inonu– Eskisehir faults are the most important earthquake sources in the study site. for the present study. Locations of the previous and recent boreholes and the geoseismic investigations are shown in Fig. Dobry et al. 2000). 3. The most commonly used seismic methods for velocity logging are the cross-hole and down-hole techniques. SPT tests were conducted at 1 m intervals and the samples from SPT tubes were used for laboratory testing. 2. the thickness of the alluvial sequence in the basin ranges between 25 and 115 m. was also felt in Yenisehir and its vicinity.5 and 17 m. (2000) and the State Port and Airport Directory (DLH 2002). In this study. In fact. the boreholes were planned to penetrate to a depth of 30 m if possible. and locations of geotechnical and geoseismic investigations (modiﬁed from Doyuran et al. SPT soundings. which resulted in extensive loss of life and damage to structures particularly in the Marmara Region. The Quaternary deposits are represented by alluvial soils and detritus and are observed in the middle of the basin. Due to some restrictions at the locations of boreholes H6 and H7 and the very shallow depth of borehole H12. The groundwater table in each hole was also measured. 2000) Fig. A total of 149 specimens extracted from SPT tubes were tested in the laboratory to determine their grain size distribution and Atterberg limits. shear wave velocities were measured using seismic refraction with the assistance of the General Directorate of Disaster Affairs (Dikmen et al.45 m while the others ranged between 4. Twelve of these boreholes are relevant to the present study. Seismic refraction is largely used in determining the dynamic properties of the underlying layers. 3 Siesmotectonic map of the Eastern Marmara Region (after Doyuran et al.Connection of shear wave velocity with SPT 205 Fig. Yenisehir is located within a ﬁrst-degree earthquake zone of Turkey (GDDA 1996). These measurements were taken at the locations of nine boreholes drilled during the study. geotechnical studies for the assessment of foundation conditions and a railway route were conducted by Doyuran et al. 2000) marbles. claystone and marl and unconformably overlie the basement rocks (Genc 1992). Therefore. seismic studies were not undertaken at these locations. sandstone. The study site is surrounded by a number of active faults as shown in Fig. These previous studies included a total of 37 boreholes and associated SPTs. 2 Geological map of the study site.
Below this. with high SPT-N values. grain size decreases and clays and silty clays with high plasticity dominate. Hasancebi and R. As can be seen from the Vs–SPT(N) versus depth plots for some selected borehole locations in Fig. is a stiff soil. Based on these results.206 N. respectively. 5 Seismic refraction proﬁles at the locations of boreholes H3 and H8 123 . Sand sized material in the Quaternary deposits is dominant at the southern part of the site and these soils are represented by SP and SW. it is deeper (‡14 m) at the north and shallower in the south. 4 Geological cross sections (a) and some typical engineering logs (b) illustrating the subsurface ground conditions at Yenisehir settlement and its vicinity ASTM (1994). Fig. 6. Fig. at some localities the silty clay may also appear below the sandy zone. generally ranging between 3 and 8 m. (2000). Statistical evaluations of the data from grain size analyses are given in Table 1. Towards the north. The groundwater table in the study site is shallow. and SC and SM soil classes. A typical cross-section through the Yenisehir settlement area. gravel layers of variable thickness can be observed in the Quaternary deposits at shallow depths. there exists medium dense to loose silty sand. Occasionally. 2004) suggest that the alluvial sequence generally starts with silty clay. This clay. based on the data from Doyuran et al. Most of the tested soils from the north of the site fall into the CH and CL soil classes. However. However. the specimens were classiﬁed according to the Uniﬁed Soil Classiﬁcation System. Ulusay Subsurface conditions The data from the previous and recent boreholes and the resistivity study (Dikmen et al. Vs increases with increasing SPT values. 5. some selected geotechnical logs and two typical seismic refraction proﬁles showing the variation of Vs at the locations of boreholes H3 and H8 are depicted in Fig.
186 0. 6 Variation of Vs and SPT-N with depth at some borehole locations Proposed empirical correlations for Vs–SPT(N) While it is preferable to determine Vs directly from ﬁeld tests.066 Fig. 7 Correlations between Vs and SPT-N for all soils (a). Many correlations between Vs and penetration resistance have been proposed.084 0.160 0. sandy soils (b) and clayey soils (c) Fig. 17 are quoted in Table 2.47 27. Sykora and Stokoe (1983) suggest that geological age and soil type are not 123 .3 Standard deviation 0.91 9. the majority based on uncorrected SPT-N values. it is often not economically feasible to make Vs measurements at all locations.74 23.Connection of shear wave velocity with SPT 207 Table 1 Statistical evaluation of grain size distribution of soil samples Grain size Gravel (%) Sand (%) Silt (%) Clay (%) Max 0 4 0 0 Min 49 100 76 34 Mean 11 49 30 10 Standard error 12.
2) compares well with the other equations for the prediction of the Vs of sands. All soils ð1Þ Vs ¼ 90:8N 0:319 ðr ¼ 0:65Þ.3N0. such as clays. all the equations including the equation of the present study (Eq. i. this category was not included in the evaluations. indicated that the situation for gravels is different because the correlation for gravels estimates higher Vs values when compared to those from other soils. In the ﬁrst series of analyses. Iyisan (1996).337 82N0.49 = 116. (1997) and Kiku et al.35N0. Iyisan (1996).33 92. Sisman (1995). Seed and Idriss (1981). Jafari et al.73 important parameters in determining Vs. 7). as can be seen from Table 2. Hasancebi and R.31 = 145(N60)0.5 and 1:2 slopes.39 91N0. energy-corrected SPT-N. However. In addition.348 61N0.202 N.5N0. Equations 1–3 are plotted in Fig. 10b) indicated that except the equation developed by Lee (1990).8N0. some investigators have also proposed correlations between Vs and SPT-N for different soils. The plotted data are scattered between the lines with 1:0.e.and stress-corrected SPT-N. 9 to assess the effect of soil type.5N0. new relationships were proposed between uncorrected Vs (m/s) and corresponding SPT-N values in three categories.29 = 57.271 = 27N0. The correlations from the present study are plotted in Fig.4N0.292 = 114. 1) yield similar Vs values. However.1N0. the equation of Lee (1990) generally over-predicts Vs for N > 20 and under-predicts Vs for N £ 20. energy. In this study.5 97N0.3185) = 32. 8. Sandy soils ð2Þ Vs ¼ 97:9N 0:269 ðr ¼ 0:75Þ. sandy soils and clayey soils (Fig.516 = 22N0.337 85. 10a. the proposed equation (Eq. Figure 9 suggests that the correlations for different soil categories yield similar values of Vs indicating that soil type has little effect on these correlations. (2001) Jafari et al. the soil properties considered in the regression analyses for some correlations included stress-corrected Vs. who also studied gravely soils in Turkey. This is consistent with the ﬁndings of Iyisan (1996). Ulusay Sands – – – – Vs – – – Vs – Vs – – – Vs – – Clays – – – – Vs – – – – – Vs – – – Vs – Vs = 80. while the SPT-N value is of prime importance. Except the relationships of Ohsaki and Iwasaki (1973).178 = 132(N60)0. Similar comparisons made for sands (Fig. Clayey soils ð3Þ Comparisons between the measured Vs and Vs predicted from Eqs 1–3 are presented in Fig. 123 . 97 data pairs (Vs and SPT-N) were employed in the assessments. 1 proposed in this study estimates Vs values considerably closer to those derived from most of the existing equations. (2001) in Fig.85 = 68. The correlations were developed using a simple regression analysis for the existing database. (1997) Pitilakis et al. (2002) Vs Vs Vs Vs Vs Vs Vs Vs – Vs – Vs Vs Vs – Vs – = = = = = = = = 84N0. due to the effect of grain size and cementation. (1999) Kiku et al.31 76N0.2N0. Based on the distribution of the plotted data. Eq. There is only a slight difference between Eq. 1 and those developed by Ohba and Toriumi (1970) and Imai and Yoshimura (1970). with smaller Vs values (Vs < 250 m/s) falling close to the line 1:1.43N0.6N0. Because few data from the silty layers were available. silts and sands. depth (D) and ﬁnes content (FC). 10a (which were recommended for all soils). The following relationships with their correlation coefﬁcients (r) are proposed between Vs (m/s) and SPT-N values for the three different soil categories.51 = 51.1(N + 0.208 Table 2 Some existing correlations between Vs and SPT-N Author(s) Vs (m/s) All soils Ohba and Toriumi (1970) Imai and Yoshimura (1970) Fujiwara (1972) Ohsaki and Iwasaki (1973) Imai (1977) Ohta and Goto (1978) Seed and Idriss (1981) Imai and Tonouchi (1982) Sykora and Stokoe (1983) Jinan (1987) Lee (1990) Sisman (1995) Iyisan (1996) Jafari et al. c together with several of the earlier regression equations given in Table 2. for all soils.292 = 100.331 = 80.314 0. Vs ¼ 90N 0:309 ðr ¼ 0:73Þ.
9 Effect of soil type on Vs–SPT(N) relationship where Vsc and Vsm are the predicted and measured shear wave velocities. (2002) differs from the other three equations and yields under-predicted and over-predicted Vs values for SPT-N £ 20 and SPT > 20 conditions. respectively.Connection of shear wave velocity with SPT 209 Fig. 3 of the present study. 10 Comparisons between proposed and previous correlations for Vs and SPT-N for all soils (a). The speciﬁc geotechnical conditions of the studied area are probably the main cause of this while the quantity of the processed data. sandy soils (b) and clayey soils (c) Fig. 123 . respectively. the scaled percent error (Eq. The equation of Jafari et al. Scaled percent error ¼ ½ðVsc À Vsm Þ=Vsm Â 100 ð4Þ Fig. 10c suggests that the equations developed by Imai (1977) and Lee (1990) predict higher Vs values when compared to those from Eq. In addition to the comparisons shown in Fig. 10. sandy soils (b) and clayey soils (c) The comparison for clays given in Fig. 8 Measured versus predicted shear wave velocities for all soils (a). 4) versus cumulative frequency graphs have also been drawn in Fig. the SPT procedure and the different methods of shear wave velocity measurements employed in various studies may be other causes of difference. 11.
c are plotted in Fig. sandy soils (b) and clayey soils (c) N. are within 20% of the scaled percent error. 11a. The developed relationships for different soils are given in Fig. 12a. Ulusay As seen in Fig. (1999) who previously investigated N60–Vs relationships for clays and sands. c. 1 to 3. f. These were compared to those suggested by Pitilakis et al. When the correlation coefﬁcients obtained from Vs to N60 relationships are compared to those obtained from Eqs. 11 Scaled percent error of Vs predicted for all soils (a). 13a. the equations based on uncorrected SPT-N values provide a somewhat better ﬁt than the equations based on energy-corrected measurements. about 85% of the Vs values predicted from Eqs. sands and clays respectively. This situation is also seen from Fig. indicating a better estimate than those from the existing equations. The relationship between Vs and energy-corrected SPT-N(N60) was also investigated and equations for all soils. c. sands and clays were established.210 Fig. The equations given in Fig. 12d. Hasancebi and R. 1 to 3 for all soils. together with the 123 . 12b. The SPT blow-counts were corrected for striking energy during the test employed in this study (donut-type hammer raised and dropped by two turns of rope). b respectively.
based on the geotechnical and geoseismic data from the Yenisehir settlement situated in the Marmara Region of Turkey. the quantity of processed data and the procedures used in 123 . 13b). The regression equations developed in this study compare well with most of the previous equations and exhibit a good prediction performance. (1999) for sands and clays. The differences between existing and proposed equations are mainly due to the speciﬁc geotechnical conditions of the studied sites. the use of an equation developed for all soils based on uncorrected blow-counts is recommended for practical purposes. Conclusions In this study. 12 Vs–N60 relationships for all soils (a). The regression equations developed provide a viable way of estimating Vs from SPT blow-count for preliminary regional ground shaking mapping and sitespeciﬁc response analysis. (1999) for sands. while the type of soil has little inﬂuence. the equation in Fig. As shown in Fig. 13a. (1999) for clays yields considerably higher Vs estimations when compared to those from the equation developed in this study (Fig.Connection of shear wave velocity with SPT Fig. the equation of Pitilakis et al. The equations based on uncorrected SPT-N values provide a somewhat better ﬁt than the equations based on energycorrected SPT-N values. sandy soils (e) and clayey soils (f) 211 regression equations developed by Pitilakis et al. sandy soils (b) and clayey soils (c). Therefore. The results obtained from the study support the ﬁndings of earlier work suggesting that blow-count is a signiﬁcant parameter in Vs–SPT(N) correlations. and measured versus predicted shear wave velocities for all soils (d). However. It appears from these assessments that the equations based on uncorrected SPT-N values are preferable for indirect estimations of Vs. an attempt was made to develop new relationships between SPT-N and Vs to indirectly estimate the Vs to be used for practical purposes. 12b compares well with the regression equation of Pitilakis et al.
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