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Faculty : Technology Management Page 1/6

Department : Construction and Real Estate Edition 1


Management Checking No
Title : Effective Date
ULTRASONIC PULSE VELOCITY TEST Amendment
Date

1.0 OBJECTIVE

1.1 To study the quality of existing structure and the location of internal defect
1.2 To determine the dynamic modulus of elasticity, dynamic Poisson’s ratio,
homogeneity, estimated compressive strength, depth of cracks, and concrete
density

2.0 EXPERIMENT OUTCOME

2.1 Able to determine the uniformity of concrete in or between members with


according to clause 8, BS 1881: Part 203: 1986
2.2 Able to detect of the presence and appproximate extent of cracks, voids, and
other defects with according to clause 9, BS 1881: Part 203: 1986
2.3 Able to correlate the pulse velocity and strength as a measure of concrete
quality with according to clause 11, BS 1881: Part 203: 1986
2.4 Able to determine the modulus of elasticity and dynamic Poisson’s ratio of
concrete with according to clause 12, BS 1881: Part 203: 1986

3.0 EQUIPMENT & MATERIALS

3.1 Portable Ultrasonic Non-Destructive Digital Indicating Tester (PUNDIT)


3.2 Plain, reinforced and prestressed concrete whether it is precast or cast in situ

4.0 PROCEDURE

(A) Equipment Calibration

i. PUNDIT must be calibrated at start and at the end of each period of use.
ii. A reference bar, with engraved pulse transit time, is provided to check the
instrument zero.
iii. Apply a smear of grease to the transducer faces and press the transducers firmly
to the ends of the bar.
iv. Adjust the SET REF control until the reference bar transit time is obtained on
the LCD.
v. The PRF must be switched to 10 pps when setting the reference.
Faculty : Technology Management Page 2/6
Department : Construction and Real Estate Edition 1
Management Checking No
Title : Effective Date
Amendment
ULTRASONIC PULSE VELOCITY TEST Date

(B) Testing Concrete

i. Three concrete cubes with 150mm x 150mm x 150mm are used.


ii. It is recommended that the 0.1 µ sec range be selected for path lengths up to
about 400mm.
iii. The direct transmission arrangement should be used, in which the transmitting
transducer is placed on the surface and the receiving transducer is placed on the
surface at the successive positions along a line.
iv. The distance which the pulses travel in the material (i.e. the path length) must
also be measured to enable the velocity to be determined from:-

Path length
Pulse velocity = Transit time

v. Transit time and the distance of the center to center are recorded in the
record sheet.

5.0 INTREPRETATION OF TEST RESULTS

(A) Measurement of concrete uniformity

i. Measurements of pulse velocity provide means of studying the homogeneity


and, for this purpose, a system of measuring points which covers uniformly the
appropriate volume of concrete in the concrete has to be chosen.
ii. Readings should be taken on a regular grid over the concrete cubes.
iii. Pulse velocity contours over cube need to be plotted.

(B) Detection of voids

i. A grid should be drawn on the concrete member with its points of intersection
spaced to correspond to the size of void that would significantly affect its
performance.
ii. A survey of measurements at the grid points enables a large cavity to be
investigated by measuring the transit times of pulses passing between the
transducers when they are placed so that the cavity lies in the direct path
between them.

Faculty : Technology Management Page 3/6


Department : Construction and Real Estate Edition 1
Management Checking No
Title : Effective Date
Amendment
ULTRASONIC PULSE VELOCITY TEST Date

(C) Correlation of Pulse Velocity and Strength

i. The appropriate test specimens should be made in accordance with the methods
described in BS 1881: Parts 108, 109 and 110.
ii. At least three specimens should be used.
iii. The pulse velocity should be measured across a specimen between moulded
faces.
iv. Strength of concrete cubes tested is estimated by referring to Figure 1 shown in
Appendix I which shows a typical curve obtained for a concrete made with river
gravel aggregate and calibrated by using beams.

(D) Estimation of Elastic Modulus and Dynamic Poisson’s ratio

i. The estimation of elastic modulus is done by referring to Figure 2 shown in


Appendix II which shows the curve which may be used to determine both static
and dynamic elastic modulus from pulse velocity measurements.
ii. The value of dynamic Poisson’s ratio, υ may be determined from Table 1.

Table 1: Values of dynamic Poisson’s ratio


nL υ
v
0.257 0.45
0.342 0.40
0.395 0.35
0.431 0.30
0.456 0.25
0.474 0.20
0.487 0.15
0.494 0.10
0.499 0.05

Faculty : Technology Management Page 4/6

Department : Construction and Real Estate Edition 1


Management Checking No
Title : Effective Date
Amendment
ULTRASONIC PULSE VELOCITY TEST Date

6.0 CONCLUSION

The report should include the following information:

(a) Date, time and place of investigation


(b) Description of structure or specimen tested
(c) Nominal composition of concrete, including:
(i) cement type
(ii) cement content
(iii) water/cement ratio
(iv) aggregate type and size
(v) any admixtures used
(d) Curing conditions, temperature and age of concrete at time of test
(e) Specification of the environment for which the concrete was designed
(f) Sketch showing location of transducer position and paths of pulse
propagation.
(g) Surface conditions at test points (e.g. smooth, trowelled, rough, presence of
surface cracking or spalling as a result of fire damage).
(h) Estimated internal moisture content conditions of concrete at time of test
and long term curing conditions, where known, e.g. wet surface, surface
dry (having not long been demoulded), or air-dry (demoulded in drying
conditions for some time).
(i) Type and make of apparatus, its reading accuracy, pulse frequency and any
special characteristics
(j) Path lengths, methods of measurement and estimated accuracy of
measurements.
(k) Measured values of pulse velocity

Faculty : Technology Management Page 5/6

Department : Construction and Real Estate Edition 1


Management Checking No
Title : Effective Date
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ULTRASONIC PULSE VELOCITY TEST Date

Appendix I:

Figure 1: Typical strength-velocity correlation for concrete

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Department : Construction and Real Estate Edition 1


Management Checking No
Title : Effective Date
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Appendix II:

Figure 2: Curves relating pulse velocity with static and dynamic elastic modulus