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CEG8219 : Ground Investigation, Contamination, and Improvement

  • Offered for Year: 2023/24
  • Module Leader(s): Dr Jean Hall
  • Lecturer: Dr Sadegh Nadimi
  • Owning School: Engineering
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus
Semester 1 Credit Value: 20
ECTS Credits: 10.0


1.       Students should be able to demonstrate their knowledge and understanding of essential facts, concepts, theories and principles of ground engineering in designing a ground investigation, developing a ground model and in the selection of appropriate remediation and ground improvement techniques.

2.       Students should be able to demonstrate an ability to organise a desk study and site reconnaissance to assemble data to design a ground investigation and propose appropriate solutions for remediation and improvement.

3.       Students should be able to understand risk assessment and methods in the context of ground investigations.

This module will provide a introduction to the design and philosophy of geotechnical site investigations and a legislation element incorporating contaminated land and improvement. Students will learn about the range of exploration and testing techniques available to geotechnical engineers. Students will also learn how investigations are planned and how the results of investigations relate to the design process. After developing a ground model the students will learn about the industry standard ground improvement techniques and how to apply these in a case study setting.

Outline Of Syllabus

Philosophy and Design, What is ground investigation, Reasons for ground investigation, The Objectives, The Design process, The requirements, legislation, desk study, Site reconnaissance, Design of a ground investigation; Field Operations, Philosophy, Shallow Exploration Techniques, Medium Exploration Techniques, Deep Exploration Techniques, Sampling, Other In Situ Tests, Field Permeability Tests, Geophysical Tests, Laboratory Tests, Classification Tests, Strength Tests, Ground reporting requirements, Definitions, Test Schedule Method Statements, Bill of Quantities, Risk Assessment. Ground Improvement Techniques for contaminated and derelict land including shallow and deep compaction techniques, Chemical mixing such as lime and cement, Ground freezing, Dewatering and Electrokinetics.

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture153:0045:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture182:0036:00Pre-recorded, non-synchronous online
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion115:0015:00Group presentation (15 mins duration)
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion135:0035:00Individual piece of coursework
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesPractical23:006:00Rock Core Logging; Ground Improv. Practicals, soil compaction, lime stabilization and Electrokinetic
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching32:006:00Tutorials
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesFieldwork23:006:00Site Visit and Geological Field Skills
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesDrop-in/surgery16:006:00N/A
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study145:0045:00Includes background reading and reading lecture notes for a full understanding of material
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

Students will acquire knowledge through lectures, small group teaching activities, directed self study (independent study), site visits and fieldwork. Skills will be practiced through formative exercises, small group teaching activities and a short group presentation. Ground interpretation and application to investigative techniques will be assessed through an individual coursework exercise.

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Prof skill assessmnt1M30Group presentation (15 mins) which amounts to approximately 15 hrs of student time.
Written exercise1M70An individual timed piece of coursework which amounts to approx 35hrs of student time in preparation
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

Design skills, that is, creative and innovative ability through application of essential facts, concepts, theories and principles of geotechnics to produce a relevant ground investigation will be developed through formative exercises, coursework and private study. They will be assessed through the production of a major exercise to design and cost an investigation and present a solution to the problem. Individual performance is assessed by peer review, and continuous assessment.

Reading Lists