A study of surface wave attenuation measurement for application to pavement characterization

John S. Popovics*, Won Joon Song, Jan D. Achenbach

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


There is a need for non-destructive evaluation (NDE) techniques which can effectively determine the extent of damage (cracking) in concrete structures. Non-destructive, one-sided surface wave attenuation measurement is a very sensitive and practical tool for such characterization. A technique for practical determination of frequency-dependent surface wave attenuation is introduced and demonstrated to be sensitive to damage in free concrete slabs. A theoretical model for the attenuation response in undamaged free slabs is introduced and shown to accurately predict experimentally obtained responses in concrete within certain frequency limits. The theoretical model is then used to investigate the practical application of the attenuation technique to concrete pavement NDE in terms of slab depth and subbase conditions. Theoretically obtained data are presented for a variety of pavement types. Based on the presented results of the theoretical model, conclusions concerning practical application of the technique to pavement inspection are given.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)300-308
Number of pages9
JournalProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
StatePublished - Dec 1 1998
EventStructural Materials Technology III - San Antonio, TX, United States
Duration: Mar 31 1998Apr 3 1998


  • Attenuation
  • Concrete
  • Non-destructive
  • Pavements
  • Stress waves
  • Surface waves
  • Testing
  • Ultrasound

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering

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