Soils Analysis: “A Building is Only as Strong as Its Foundation”

Soils analysis is performed by a state-licensed specialist with a civil engineering degree that has passed the NCEES Fundamentals of Engineering exam. Soil samples are collected using various methods including shovels, auger boring, and drilling, among others. Some soil tests require laboratory analysis while others are conducted in the field.

Here are a few of the more commonly-performed soil tests:

  • The specific gravity test measures the mass of solids in the soil compared to the mass of water at the same volume to help determine its mineral composition, weathering, porosity, and saturation.
  • Dry density is the weight of soil particles in a given volume. A dry density test calculates the amount of moisture needed to achieve maximum soil compaction.
  • The Atterberg limits test establishes the moisture contents at which fine-grained soils transition between solid, semi-solid, plastic, and liquid states.
  • The Proctor compaction test determines the optimal moisture content at which the soil will become most dense and achieve its maximum dry density.

FCE provides complete soils analysis services for private and public sector clients. For more information or assistance on your next project, please contact us at (908) 835-9500.


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