Comprehensive Shear-Wave Velocity Study in the Poplar Bluff Area, Southeast Missouri


The University of Missouri-Rolla in collaboration with the Missouri Department of Transportation acquired multiple geophysical, geotechnical and borehole data sets in the Poplar Bluff study area. The primary objective was to evaluate the utility of the four conventional and/or newly developed methods listed below for determining the shear-wave velocity of soils with a view to estimating frequency-dependent soil motion amplification and/or deamplification. These four methods were evaluated individually and then comparatively in terms of accuracy, functionality, cost-effectiveness and overall utility.

  • Crosshole Shear-wave velocity (CH)
  • Seismic Cone Penetrometer (SCPT)
  • Multi-channel Analysis of Surface Waves (MASW)
  • Ultrasonic Pulse Velocity Laboratory Test (UPV)
In addition, a suite of 3-D maps depicting spatial variations in thickness, stratigraphy and shear-wave velocity of soils in Poplar Bluff area were prepared as well as a revised 3-D shallow subsurface materials map complete with shear-wave velocity test data (suitable for preparation of an earthquake soil amplification map). These maps depict the lateral variability of the shallow subsurface materials' shear-wave velocity and stratigraphy, and their range of values or properties.


Geosciences and Geological and Petroleum Engineering

Second Department

Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering


Missouri. Department of Transportation


This investigation was conducted by the University of Missouri-Rolla in cooperation with the Missouri Department of Transportation. Contract or Grant no. RI03-029

Keywords and Phrases

Surface Waves; MASW; Seismic; Rayleigh Waves; Seismic Cone Penetrometer; SCPT; Shear Waves; Shear Modulus; Liquefaction; Ultrasonic Pulse Velocity; Cyclic Triaxial; Resonant Column; Crosshole

Geographic Coverage

Southeast Missouri

Report Number

RDT 05-006

Document Type

Technical Report

Document Version


File Type





© 2005 Missouri Department of Transportation, All rights reserved.

Publication Date

01 May 2005

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