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Soil and Rock Logging Course - 27 November 2024

Engineering description of Soil and Rock (Eurocode 7 – BS 5930)

LocationFugro House Hithercroft Road Wallingford OX10 9RB UK
Cost£366 including VAT per person
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Course Outline
The accurate engineering description of soils and rocks is fundamental to the success of any civil engineering or geo-environmental site investigation.  In the great majority of cases the materials recovered from the ground are seen only once and it is in this very short space of time that the geotechnical/geo-environmental-engineer must decide on the character of the soil or rock recovered, and from that decide on how to describe and record it. These descriptions invariably form the building blocks of conceptual ground models and are the basis for important design decisions, work often carried out by different personnel from another organisation, using only the records written in the logs.  

This course puts the process of logging into the broader framework of  both engineering and environmental investigations and provides comprehensive practical, hands-on experience in the description of soil and rock, based on Eurocode 7 - BS5930 (“Code of practice for site investigations”).  Eurocode 7 - BS5930 provides a consistent framework for site investigation and contains the guidance allowing the standardisation of material description which is now used throughout the UK engineering and environmental industries.

Course Structure
The course will involve personal tuition designed to impart the skills necessary to describe soil and rock. The course is supported by a compact field package of information summarising the principles of describing ground. Numbers are limited to 15 to enable all attendees’ ample access to samples and logging, and the opportunity for personal tuition. Every attendee has the opportunity to write their own log and their own descriptions of cores and samples using Eurocode 7 procedures.


Session 1    09.00 - 10.45 Registration and basic issues for logging   
Introduction to what is expected from a description and log of soils and rocks and the role of logging in design and construction
Tools for the job; an introduction to the techniques for the recovery of samples and their affect on the samples recovered.

Problems of recovering samples and achieving representative samples

What to do with missing data (e.g. no recovery).

Integrating with the driller’s log to produce the final log.
The concept of Codes and their use, and what to do with information not requested by a Code.    

Session 2.   10.45 -11.45 Description of rock core (Theory)

Theory behind strength terms used

What to look for, how to describe recovery, TCR, SCR, RQD, and FI

How to describe surfaces

Vocabulary that must be observed



Session 3.  11.45 – 13.00 Description of soil and soil core (Theory)

Theory behind strength terms used

What to look for, how to describe recovery and the reasons behind grain size divisions, strength terms and consistency

Surfaces in soils

Vocabulary that must be observed



LUNCH 13.00 – 13.30 Lunch


Session 4.  13.30 -  15.00  Hands-on Practical     
Practical description of real rock cores including the assessment of core quality (TCR, SCR, RQD and FI) to illustrate the fundamental engineering characteristics of rock core, problems associated with drilling techniques and the degradation of core with time between its recovery and description.

Session 5.   15.00 - 16.30 Hands-on Practical    
Practical description of soils including an assessment of their physical properties using a variety of soil samples, so providing experience with assessing composition, structure/texture and problems with classification, and assigning physical properties (permeability, shear strength etc.) from field descriptions.
Session 6   16.30 - 17.00 Rounding off
Answering unanswered questions and final advice for your description and logging in practice. Issue of certificates    

Course Presenters
Dr. Michael de Freitas is the Emeritus Reader of Engineering Geology at Imperial College London and Co-Director of First Steps Ltd. He has extensive experience in the problems inadequate logging bring to the design and construction processes in civil and environmental engineering, and the delays and claims that can follow.

Paul Emerson is Director of EM Drilling Ltd, a firm specialising in advanced ground investigations in the UK and overseas. He holds a degree in Geology with an MSc in Engineering Geology and has extensive experience in both the field description of soil and rock and the interpretation of field descriptions to form conceptual ground models for design purposes.

This course was established in 2003 and since then many hundreds of young professionals have attended and speak highly of the help it has given them in practice.

Fugro House Hithercroft Road Wallingford OX10 9RB UK

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