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Experiment No.

1
DISTURBED SOIL SAMPLING, LABELING AND STORAGE
1. Objective(s):
This activity aims to introduce the use of hand auger for obtaining disturbed soil samples and the
standard method of storage of soil for future laboratory use.
2. Intended Learning Outcomes (ILOs):
The students shall be able to:
understand the standard procedure in soil sampling and handling
perform the soil profiling as observed from the results of the experiment
3. Discussion:
The simplest method of soil investigation and sampling is through the use of auger borings. This method is
applicable for retrieving disturbed soil samples that are to be tested in the laboratory to further determine
its engineering properties. However, it is important to be reminded that improper handling and storage of
the sample can compromise the integrity of the soil investigation conducted.
A standardized labeling of the sample is beneficial as the soil sample, in general, is handled by different
personnel in the field investigation and in the laboratory. It is important that all pertinent data observed on
the field are to be written down in the sample label in addition to the primary record book of the site
engineer. The data in the sample label will direct the laboratory personnel in finalizing the borehole log
which is to be counterchecked by the site engineers primary record book.
4. Resources:
1.
2.
3.
4.

Soil auger (optional)


Spade or shovel
Moisture tight sample containers
Pans
5. Procedure:
1. Clear the area of grass and vegetation where the sample is to be obtained.
2. With the use of soil auger/shove, the soil is bored/shove until desired depth is reached. After a
half (0.25) meter advancement, withdraw the auger to the hole and remove the soil for
examination and testing. Record the depth and the observations on the soil sample retrieved.
3. Seal the soil sample in a moisture tight container and label appropriately.
4. Extract again the soil in the succeeding borehole advancementuntil a depth of 1.0 meters is
reached.
5. Draw the stratigraphy of the site to determine the geometry of the soil layers.

Course:
Group No.:
Group Leader:
Group Members:
1.
2.
3.
4.
6. Data and Results:
Depth
0.00
to
0.25
to
0.50
to
0.75
to

Experiment No.:
Section:
Date Performed:
Date Submitted:
Instructor:

Description
0.25
0.50
0.75
1.00

Borehole Location Map:

Stratigraphy:

7. Conclusion:

8. Assessment (Rubric for Laboratory Performance):


2

CRITERIA

BEGINNER
1

ACCEPTABLE
2

PROFICIENT
3

SCORE

I. Laboratory Skills
Members do not
Manipulative
demonstrate needed
Skills
skills.
Experimental
Set-up
Process Skills
Safety
Precautions

Members occasionally
Members always
demonstrate needed
demonstrate needed skills.
skills
Members are able to
Members are able to set-up
Members are unable to
set-up the materials with the material with minimum
set-up the materials.
supervision.
supervision.
Members do not
Members occasionally Members always
demonstrate targeted demonstrate targeted demonstrate targeted
process skills.
process skills.
process skills.
Members follow safety
Members do not follow
Members follow safety
precautions most of the
safety precautions.
precautions at all times.
time.

II. Work Habits


Time
Members do not finish
Management /
on time with incomplete
Conduct of
data.
Experiment
Members do not know
their tasks and have no
Cooperative and defined responsibilities.
Teamwork
Group conflicts have to
be settled by the
teacher.

Members finish ahead of time


Members finish on time
with complete data and time
with incomplete data.
to revise data.

Members have defined


responsibilities most of
the time. Group
conflicts are
cooperatively managed
most of the time.
Clean and orderly
Messy workplace during workplace with
Neatness and
and after the
occasional mess during
Orderliness
experiment.
and after the
experiment.
Members require
Members require
Ability to do
supervision by the
occasional supervision
independent work
teacher.
by the teacher.
Other Comments/Observations:

Members are on tasks and


have defined responsibilities
at all times. Group conflicts
are cooperatively managed at
all times.
Clean and orderly workplace
at all times during and after
the experiment.
Members do not need to be
supervised by the teacher.

Total Score
(TotalScore)
Rating=
100
24

9. References
Murthy, V.N.S. (2011). Textbook of Soil Mechanics and Foundation Engineering. Singapore: Alken
Company
3

American Society for Testing and Materials (1999). Standard Test Method for Penetration Test and Split
Barrel Sampling of Soils(D-1586). Pennsylvania: ASTM International

Experiment No. 2
DRY PREPARATION OF DISTURBED SOIL SAMPLES
1. Objective(s):
The activity aims to impart the standard preparation of disturbed soil samples.
2. Intended Learning Outcomes (ILOs):
The students shall be able to:
prepare disturbed soil samples for future laboratory experiments.
distinquish unacceptable practices in preparation of soil samples
3. Discussion:
The method of dry preparation of soil samples is used to prepare soil samples in various laboratory
experiments such as moisture content determination, particle size analysis and in determination of
Atterberg limits. It is proper that the samples be prepared in an orderly manner to avoid compromising the
results of the laboratory experiments because of errors in the preparation. Proper preparation also will
allow sufficient amount of samples for each laboratory experiment.
4. Resources:
1.
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.

Digital Weighing Scale.


Pans
Standard Sieves #4 and #10
Rubber Mallet or Rubber-covered Pestle
Mortar and Rubber Pestle
Trowel

5. Procedure:
1. Allow the soil sample recovered from the field to dry thoroughly on room temperature. Using a
mortar and pestle, break up the aggregations thoroughly.
2. Separate the test sample using Sieve No. 10. Break up again the soil fraction retained in Sieve #
10 to break the grains thoroughly. Separate again the grinded soil into two fractions using Sieve
#10.
3. Determine the weight of the fraction retained in Sieve #10.
4. Sieve the coarse material using the Sieve No. 4 and record the mass retained.
5. Thoroughly mix together the soil fraction passing Sieve No.10 on the previous sieving operations.
6. Describe the sieved soil samples.

Course:

Experiment No.:
5

Group No.:
Group Leader:
Group Members:
1.
2.
3.
4.

Section:
Date Performed:
Date Submitted:
Instructor:

6. Data and Results:


Sample #

Weight (g)

1
2

Purpose
Particle Size
Analysis

Description

Soil Constants

7. Conclusion:

CRITERIA

BEGINNER
1

ACCEPTABLE
2

PROFICIENT
3

SCORE

I. Laboratory Skills
6

Manipulative
Skills
Experimental
Set-up
Process Skills
Safety
Precautions

Members do not
demonstrate needed
skills.

Members occasionally
Members always
demonstrate needed
demonstrate needed skills.
skills
Members are able to
Members are able to set-up
Members are unable to
set-up the materials with the material with minimum
set-up the materials.
supervision.
supervision.
Members do not
Members occasionally Members always
demonstrate targeted demonstrate targeted demonstrate targeted
process skills.
process skills.
process skills.
Members follow safety
Members do not follow
Members follow safety
precautions most of the
safety precautions.
precautions at all times.
time.

II. Work Habits


Time
Members do not finish
Management /
on time with incomplete
Conduct of
data.
Experiment
Members do not know
their tasks and have no
Cooperative and defined responsibilities.
Teamwork
Group conflicts have to
be settled by the
teacher.

Members finish ahead of time


Members finish on time
with complete data and time
with incomplete data.
to revise data.

Members have defined


responsibilities most of
the time. Group
conflicts are
cooperatively managed
most of the time.
Clean and orderly
Messy workplace during workplace with
Neatness and
and after the
occasional mess during
Orderliness
experiment.
and after the
experiment.
Members require
Members require
Ability to do
supervision by the
occasional supervision
independent work
teacher.
by the teacher.
Other Comments/Observations:

Members are on tasks and


have defined responsibilities
at all times. Group conflicts
are cooperatively managed at
all times.
Clean and orderly workplace
at all times during and after
the experiment.
Members do not need to be
supervised by the teacher.
Total Score

Rating=

(TotalScore)
100
24

9. References
Murthy, V.N.S. (2011). Textbook of Soil Mechanics and Foundation Engineering. Singapore: Alken
Company
American Society for Testing and Materials (1998). Dry Preparation of Samples for Particle Size Analysis
(D-421). Pennsylvania: ASTM International

Experiment No. 3
WET PREPARATION OF DISTURBED SOIL SAMPLES
1. Objective(s):
The activity aims to impart an alternative method for preparation of disturbed soil samples.
2. Intended Learning Outcomes (ILOs):
The students shall be able to:
prepare disturbed soil samples for future laboratory experiments.
distinguish standard practices in preparation of soil samples
3. Discussion:
The method of wet preparation of soil samples is an alternative method used to prepare soil samples in
various laboratory experiments such as moisture content determination, particle size analysis and in
determination of Atterberg limits.
For cases wherein removal of fine-grained soil that are attached to coarse particles is difficult, wet
preparation is more appropriate than dry preparation. This is also applicable for coarse-grained particles of
the sample are soft and pulverize readily.
4. Resources:
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
7.

Digital Weighing Scale.


Oven.
Pans with at least 300 mm f and 75 mm deep.
Standard Sieves #10 and #40.
Funnel.
Filter Paper

5. Procedure:
1. Allow the soil sample recovered from the field to dry thoroughly on room temperature. Using a
mortar and pestle, break up the aggregations thoroughly.
2. Separate the material set aside for the Particle size analysis into two portions using Sieve #10.
Set aside the portion passing Sieve #10 as washing is to be performed on the portion retained
3. The portion retained is to be soaked in a pan until particle aggregations become soft. Place the
Sieve #10 on a clean pan. Allow the soaked soil with water to flow to the sieve until the height of
the water is about 12.7 mm above the mesh of the sieve. Crumble any lumps observed on the
sieve using the thumb or the fingers. Transfer the washed material on a clean pan before placing
another increment of soaked material into the sieve.
4. Dry the materials retained on Sieve #10 and add the material on Procedure no. 3. Set aside the
material for use in the Particle size analysis.
5. Remove most of the water in the washings by allowing it to pass through a funnel fitted with a filter
paper. Remove the moist soil in the filter paper and allow to dry at a temperature not exceeding
60oC. Combine the soil with material obtained in Procedure No. 3.
Course:
Experiment No.:
8

Group No.:
Group Leader:
Group Members:
1.
2.
3.
4.

Section:
Date Performed:
Date Submitted:
Instructor:

6. Data and Results:


Sample #

Weight (g)

1
2

Purpose
Particle Size
Analysis

Description

Soil Constants

7. Conclusion:

8. Assessment (Rubric for Laboratory Performance):

CRITERIA

BEGINNER
1

ACCEPTABLE
2

PROFICIENT
3

SCORE
9

I. Laboratory Skills
Members do not
Manipulative
demonstrate needed
Skills
skills.
Experimental
Set-up
Process Skills
Safety
Precautions

Members occasionally
Members always
demonstrate needed
demonstrate needed skills.
skills
Members are able to
Members are able to set-up
Members are unable to
set-up the materials with the material with minimum
set-up the materials.
supervision.
supervision.
Members do not
Members occasionally Members always
demonstrate targeted demonstrate targeted demonstrate targeted
process skills.
process skills.
process skills.
Members follow safety
Members do not follow
Members follow safety
precautions most of the
safety precautions.
precautions at all times.
time.

II. Work Habits


Time
Members do not finish
Management /
on time with incomplete
Conduct of
data.
Experiment
Members do not know
their tasks and have no
Cooperative and defined responsibilities.
Teamwork
Group conflicts have to
be settled by the
teacher.

Members finish ahead of time


Members finish on time
with complete data and time
with incomplete data.
to revise data.

Members have defined


responsibilities most of
the time. Group
conflicts are
cooperatively managed
most of the time.
Clean and orderly
Messy workplace during workplace with
Neatness and
and after the
occasional mess during
Orderliness
experiment.
and after the
experiment.
Members require
Members require
Ability to do
supervision by the
occasional supervision
independent work
teacher.
by the teacher.
Other Comments/Observations:

Members are on tasks and


have defined responsibilities
at all times. Group conflicts
are cooperatively managed at
all times.
Clean and orderly workplace
at all times during and after
the experiment.
Members do not need to be
supervised by the teacher.

Total Score
(TotalScore)
Rating=
100
24

9. References
Murthy, V.N.S. (2011). Textbook of Soil Mechanics and Foundation Engineering. Singapore: Alken
Company
American Society for Testing and Materials (1999). Wet Preparation of Soil Samples for Particle-Size
Analysis and Determination of Soil Constants (D-2217). Pennsylvania: ASTM International

10

Experiment No. 4
PREPARATION OF UNDISTURBED SOIL SAMPLE
1. Objective(s):
The activity aim to orient the students the concepts involved in the extraction and preparation of
undisturbed soil samples.
2. Intended Learning Outcomes (ILOs):
The students shall be able to:
Understand the principles regarding the extraction of undisturbed soil samples.
Acquire engineering judgment in deciding when to extract undisturbed soil samples in a soil
investigation.
Understand the importance of achieving an undisturbed sample to represent the condition of the
subsurface.
3. Discussion:
Sample disturbance is attributed to be caused by the thickness of the sampler and its diameter. A sampler
with a bigger diameter will minimize the disturbance during extraction. Meanwhile a relatively thick
sampler would cause sample disturbance. It is important to minimize sample disturbance as it could
influence the result of certain laboratory experiments.
4. Resources:
1.
2.
3.
4.

Thin-walled sampler
Spade or shovel
Hand auger
Paraffin wax

5. Procedure:
For extraction of undisturbed soil sample
1. Lower the thin-walled sampler to the bottom of the borehole and apply a continuous pressure
to advance the sampler in a rapid downward motion.
2. Determine the length of advance. Minimize the length of advance to about 10 to 15 diameter
of the tube.
3. Carefully withdraw the sampler from the soil formation as to minimize disturbance of the
sample. The tube can be slowly rotated to shear the material at the end of the tube, and to
relieve water and/or suction pressures and achieve a better recovery. For soft soil formation, a
delay before withdraw of the sampler (typically 5 to 30 minutes) may improve sample
recovery.
4. Measure the overall sample length.
5. Repeat procedures 1 to 4 until 3 samples are obtained.
6. Record the observations in a field log book.

11

Course:
Group No.:
Group Leader:
Group Members:
1.
2.
3.
4.

Experiment No.:
Section:
Date Performed:
Date Submitted:
Instructor:

6. Data and Results:


Sample #
1
2
3

Length (cm)

Weight (g)

Description

7. Conclusion:

8. Assessment (Rubric for Laboratory Performance):


CRITERIA

BEGINNER
1

ACCEPTABLE
2

PROFICIENT
3

SCORE

I. Laboratory Skills
Members do not
Manipulative
demonstrate needed
Skills
skills.
Experimental
Set-up
Process Skills

Members occasionally
Members always
demonstrate needed
demonstrate needed skills.
skills
Members are able to
Members are able to set-up
Members are unable to
set-up the materials with the material with minimum
set-up the materials.
supervision.
supervision.
Members do not
Members occasionally Members always
demonstrate targeted demonstrate targeted demonstrate targeted
12

process skills.
Safety
Precautions

process skills.
process skills.
Members follow safety
Members do not follow
Members follow safety
precautions most of the
safety precautions.
precautions at all times.
time.

II. Work Habits


Time
Members do not finish
Management /
on time with incomplete
Conduct of
data.
Experiment
Members do not know
their tasks and have no
Cooperative and defined responsibilities.
Teamwork
Group conflicts have to
be settled by the
teacher.

Members finish ahead of time


Members finish on time
with complete data and time
with incomplete data.
to revise data.

Members have defined


responsibilities most of
the time. Group
conflicts are
cooperatively managed
most of the time.
Clean and orderly
Messy workplace during workplace with
Neatness and
and after the
occasional mess during
Orderliness
experiment.
and after the
experiment.
Members require
Members require
Ability to do
supervision by the
occasional supervision
independent work
teacher.
by the teacher.
Other Comments/Observations:

Members are on tasks and


have defined responsibilities
at all times. Group conflicts
are cooperatively managed at
all times.
Clean and orderly workplace
at all times during and after
the experiment.
Members do not need to be
supervised by the teacher.

Total Score
(Total Score)
Rating=
100
24

9. References
Murthy, V.N.S. (2011). Textbook of Soil Mechanics and Foundation Engineering. Singapore: Alken
Company
American Society for Testing and Materials (2000). Thin-Walled Tube Sampling of Soils for Geotechnical
Purposes (D-1587). Pennsylvania: ASTM International

13

Experiment No. 5
DESCRIPTION AND IDENTIFICATION OF SOILS
1. Objective(s):
The activity aims to impart the manual and visual procedures for soil description and identification
prior to detailed site investigation.
2. Intended Learning Outcomes (ILOs):
The students shall be able to:
understand the soil parameters that are being understood through the conduct of the experiment
conceptualize a procedure for conduct of initial investigation on a site proposed by the instructor
3. Discussion:
It is common in engineering practice that site investigation is under time constraint and engineering
decisions are need to be made even before the release of the results of laboratory experiments. To aid the
engineer in his judgment, visual and manual procedures are proposed which allows gathering of reliable
data in the shortest time possible.
4. Resources:
1. Erlen meyer flask with diluted Hydrochloric acid
2. Pan
3. Sieve #40
4. Spatula
5. Procedure:
General
1. For every defined soil layer in the boring test, get a representative soil sample to be subjected for
visual examination.
2. Examine the soil if it is fine-grained or coarse-grained. A coarse-grained soil is abrasive in texture
and does not exhibit any interparticle attraction A fine-grained soil is smooth in texture and exhibits
interparticle attraction. . Observe if it exhibits the property of a peat soil. Peat soil is a problematic
soil which is composed primarily of vegetable tissue in various stages of decomposition and
usually in dark brown to black in color with organic odor.
For coarse-grained soil
1. Describe the angularity of the particles if it is angular, subangular, rounded or subrounded.
Angular particles have sharp edges and relatively plane sides with unpolished surfaces. If the
particles are similar to angular particles but have rounded edges, classify as subangular. Rounded
particles have smoothly curved sides and no evident edges. Subrounded particles have have
nearly plane sides but have well-rounded corners and edges.
2. Describe the color and the odor of the soil. Color and odor are important in identifying presence of
organic soil shown by presence of decaying vegetative material. Through the smell, presence of
petroleum and various chemicals can also be identified.
3. Describe the moisture content of the soil. If the soil is observed to be dry to the touch, note as dry.
If the soil is damp however, no visible water is found, classify as moist. Presence of visible water
especially if the soil is underneath the water table will classify the soil as wet.
14

4. Determine the presence of calcium carbonate as a cementing agent in the soil through the use of
dilute hydrochloric acid (HCl). Describe if the reaction is none, weak if limited bubbles are present
or strong if violent reaction is observed.
5. Describe the cementation of the soil. Soil that breaks easily with little finger pressure is classified
as weak. If considerable pressure is needed, classify the soil as moderate. Should the soil not
break under finger pressure, the cementation of the soil is strong.
6. Repeat until 4 samples are obtained.
For fine-grained soil
1. Select a representative sample and remove the particles that will not pass Sieve #40. The
specimen is to be tested for dry strength, dilatancy and toughness strength.
2. For the dry strength, select a material that will allow it to form into a ball of about 25 mm in
diameter. Add water if necessary. Then, divide it into three (3) portions and form it into a ball of 12
mm in diameter. Allow it to dry to the sun or air dry. Test the dry strength of the ball by crushing it
in between the fingers. Classify the dry strength as None, Low, Medium, High or Very High.
3. For the dilatancy test, select a material that will form the soil into 12 mm ball. Add water if
necessary until it has a soft but not sticky consistency. Using a spatula, smoothen the ball in the
palm of one hand. Shake the soil by striking the side of the hand against the other hand several
times and note the reaction of water on the surface of the soil. Squeeze the soil and note if the
water disappears. Note the dilatancy as None, Slow or rapid.
4. For the toughness test, select a portion of the specimen wherein the soil is to be rolled into
threads 3 mm in diameter. Fold and reroll the sample until the soil is about to crumble at a
diameter of about 3 mm. Note the pressure required to roll the thread as Low, Medium or High.

15

Course:
Group No.:
Group Leader:
Group Members:
1.
2.
3.
4.

Experiment No.:
Section:
Date Performed:
Date Submitted:
Instructor:

6. Data and Results:


Description
Angularity
Color
Odor
Moisture content
Reaction with HCl
Cementation
Description
Dry Strength
Dilatancy
Toughness

Sample 1

Coarse grained soil


Sample 2

Sample 3

Sample 4

Sample 1

Fine grained soil


Sample 2

Sample 3

Sample 4

7. Conclusion:

8. Assessment (Rubric for Laboratory Performance):


16

CRITERIA

BEGINNER
1

ACCEPTABLE
2

PROFICIENT
3

SCORE

I. Laboratory Skills
Members do not
Manipulative
demonstrate needed
Skills
skills.
Experimental
Set-up
Process Skills
Safety
Precautions

Members occasionally
Members always
demonstrate needed
demonstrate needed skills.
skills
Members are able to
Members are able to set-up
Members are unable to
set-up the materials with the material with minimum
set-up the materials.
supervision.
supervision.
Members do not
Members occasionally Members always
demonstrate targeted demonstrate targeted demonstrate targeted
process skills.
process skills.
process skills.
Members follow safety
Members do not follow
Members follow safety
precautions most of the
safety precautions.
precautions at all times.
time.

II. Work Habits


Time
Members do not finish
Management /
on time with incomplete
Conduct of
data.
Experiment
Members do not know
their tasks and have no
Cooperative and defined responsibilities.
Teamwork
Group conflicts have to
be settled by the
teacher.

Members finish ahead of time


Members finish on time
with complete data and time
with incomplete data.
to revise data.

Members have defined


responsibilities most of
the time. Group
conflicts are
cooperatively managed
most of the time.
Clean and orderly
Messy workplace during workplace with
Neatness and
and after the
occasional mess during
Orderliness
experiment.
and after the
experiment.
Members require
Members require
Ability to do
supervision by the
occasional supervision
independent work
teacher.
by the teacher.
Other Comments/Observations:

Members are on tasks and


have defined responsibilities
at all times. Group conflicts
are cooperatively managed at
all times.
Clean and orderly workplace
at all times during and after
the experiment.
Members do not need to be
supervised by the teacher.

Total Score
(Total Score)
Rating=
100
24

9. References
Murthy, V.N.S. (2011). Textbook of Soil Mechanics and Foundation Engineering. Singapore: Alken
Company
17

American Society for Testing and Materials (2000). Standard Practice for Description and Identification of
Soils by Visual-Manual Procedure (D-2488). Pennsylvania: ASTM International

18

Experiment No. 6
DETERMINATION OF WATER CONTENT, UNIT WEIGHT, VOID RATIO
AND DEGREE OF SATURATION OF SOIL
1. Objective(s):
To introduce to the student the procedure in determining the weight-volume characteristics of the soil.
2. Intended Learning Outcomes (ILOs):
The students shall be able to:
connect the relationship of water content, unit weight, void ratio and degree of saturation.
describe methods in determining water content, unit weight, void ratio and degree of saturation.
3. Discussion:
The determination of water content, unit weight and void ratio is an important requirement in laboratory
tests and is part of the test included in more elaborate tests. Water content is an important measure in the
compaction of soil. In order that correct water content is obtained from a soil sample, several samples at
different points must be taken. They are then mixed and the water content is then obtained from this soil
sample.
Various methodologies have been devised to determine the unit weight of the soil in the field such as
calibrated bucket method, nuclear method to name a few. For determination of the unit weight in a
laboratory setting, paraffin wax can be used in determining the unit weight. The paraffin coating applied on
the soil will allow determination of its volume as it is submerged in water.
The specific gravity of the solid grains of the soil is an engineering parameter which is dependent on the
mineralogy of the soil and the structure of its solid grains. Upon determination of the specific gravity, the
void ratio and degree of saturation of the soil can then be determined mathematically.
4. Resources:
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.

Tin cup
Digital Weighing Scale
Oven
Pycnometer
Bunsen burner
Paraffin wax

5. Procedure:
Note: For this experiment, coarse-grained soil sampleis to be utilized to expedite the oven-drying of the
sample.
Water Content Determination
1. Weigh a tin cup including its cover; identify the cover and its lid. Determine the weight of the tin
cup.
2. Place a representative sample of wet soil in the cup. Determine the weight of wet soul and tin cup.
19

3. Place the sample in the oven for at least 3 hours.


4. When the sample has dried to constant weight, obtain the weight of cup and dry soil
5. Compute the water content. The difference between weight of wet soil plus cup and weight of dry
soil plus cup is the weight of water (W w). Also compute the weight of dry soil (W s).
6. To determine the water content ().
1

= Ww/Ws x 100

7. Repeat until three (3) trials are achieved. Determine the average moisture content.
Unit Weight Determination
1. Trim a sample of soil to about 1 inches diameter and 2 to 3 inches long. Surface should be
smooth and rounded. Weigh to up to the nearest 0.1 gram.
2. Cover with a thin coating of paraffin and weigh again. Compute the volume of paraffin from weight
of paraffin. The specific gravity of paraffin is about 0.9
3. Immerse the coated sample in water in the graduated cylinder and determine its displacement.
The volume of the sample is the volume of the water displaced minus the volume of the paraffin.
4. Compute the unit weight in grams/cu. cm.
Calculations:
The volume of the paraffin is equal to the weight of paraffin used to coat sample divided by the
density of paraffin. Density of paraffin is 0.90
Wt. of paraffin = Wt. Soil coated with paraffin wt. of soiluncoated with paraffin
The volume of the paraffincoated sample is equal to the weight in air minus the weight in water,
(express the weight in gm)
Wet density of soil =
vol of soil

wt of soil

g/cc or kg/m

Specific Gravity Determination:


Calibration of Pycnometer
1. Transfer carefully the 25 gm sample to the calibrated bottle and add distilled water until about
full. Care must be exercised so as not to lose any of the soil in the transfer.
2. Expel the entrapped air by boiling gently for at least 10 minutes. Roll the bottle occasionally to
facilitate the removal of air.
3. Cool the sample to room temperature or to a temperature within the range of the calibration curve
of the bottle used.
Determination of Specific Gravity
1. Fill the bottle with distilled water to the calibration mark as discussed in step 2 from calibration of
bottle.
2. Dry the outside of the bottle, as in step 3, pycnometer calibration.
3. Weigh the bottle with water and soil, and record as W b.
4. Read and record the temperature of the contents to 0.1 C, as in step 5, pycnometer calibration.
5. Repeat procedure for at least 3 trials.
20

Note:

An alternative heating device that can be used is an electric plate stove with wire gauze.

Gt (Ws)

Gs = W + W W
s
a
b

Where:
Gs Specific gravity
Gt Specific gravity of distilled water at the temperature when
Wb was obtained (refer to Table A)
Ws Weight of oven-dried sample
Wa weight of bottle + water (from calibration curve)
Wb weight of bottle + soil and water
Determination of Void Ratio and Degree of Saturation:
The void ratio can be determined from the formula shown below:
wGs (1+w)

e=

The degree of saturation can be determined from the formula shown below:
S = Gs/e

21

Course:
Group No.:
Group Leader:
Group Members:
1.
2.
3.
4.

Experiment No.:
Section:
Date Performed:
Date Submitted:
Instructor:

6. Data and Results:


Moisture Content Determination
Sample 1
Sample 2

Description
Wt of tin cup (Wc)
Wt. of tin cup + Wet Soil (Wc+ws)
Wt. of tin cup and dry soil (Wc+dc)
Wt. of water (Ww)
Wt. of dry soil (Wds)
Water Content ()
Average
Description
Wt. of soil (Ws)
Wt. of soil and paraffin
(Ws+p)
Volume of soil+paraffin
(Vs+p)

Sample 3

Unit Weight Determination


Description
Wt. of paraffin (Wp)
Volume of paraffin (Vp)
Volume of soil (Vs)
Unit weight ()

Description
SG of distilled water (Gt)
Wt. of oven-dried
sample (Ws)

Specific Gravity Determination


Description
Wt. of bottle + water (Wa)
Weight of bottle + soil +
water (Wb)
Specific gravity of soil (Gs)

Determination of Void Ratio and Degree of Saturation


Void ratio
Degree of Saturation

22

7. Conclusion:

8. Assessment (Rubric for Laboratory Performance):


CRITERIA

BEGINNER
1

ACCEPTABLE
2

PROFICIENT
3

SCORE

I. Laboratory Skills
Members do not
Manipulative
demonstrate needed
Skills
skills.
Experimental
Set-up
Process Skills
Safety
Precautions
II. Work Habits
Time
Management /
Conduct of
Experiment
Cooperative and
Teamwork

Members occasionally
Members always
demonstrate needed
demonstrate needed skills.
skills
Members are able to
Members are able to set-up
Members are unable to
set-up the materials with the material with minimum
set-up the materials.
supervision.
supervision.
Members do not
Members occasionally Members always
demonstrate targeted demonstrate targeted demonstrate targeted
process skills.
process skills.
process skills.
Members follow safety
Members do not follow
Members follow safety
precautions most of the
safety precautions.
precautions at all times.
time.
Members do not finish
Members finish ahead of time
Members finish on time
on time with incomplete
with complete data and time
with incomplete data.
data.
to revise data.
Members do not know Members have defined Members are on tasks and
their tasks and have no responsibilities most of have defined responsibilities
defined responsibilities. the time. Group
at all times. Group conflicts
23

Group conflicts have to conflicts are


be settled by the
cooperatively managed
teacher.
most of the time.
Clean and orderly
Messy workplace during workplace with
Neatness and
and after the
occasional mess during
Orderliness
experiment.
and after the
experiment.
Members require
Members require
Ability to do
supervision by the
occasional supervision
independent work
teacher.
by the teacher.
Other Comments/Observations:

are cooperatively managed at


all times.
Clean and orderly workplace
at all times during and after
the experiment.
Members do not need to be
supervised by the teacher.

Total Score
(Total Score)
Rating=
100
24

9. References
Murthy, V.N.S. (2011). Textbook of Soil Mechanics and Foundation Engineering. Singapore: Alken
Company
American Society for Testing and Materials (2000). Standard Test Method for Determination of Water
Content of Soil by Direct Heating Method (D-4959). Pennsylvania: ASTM International
American Society for Testing and Materials (2002). Standard Test Methods for Determination of Specific
Gravity of Soil Solids by Water Pycnometer (D-854). Pennsylvania: ASTM International

24