Assessment of debonding in concrete slabs using seismic methods

Manuel Celaya, Parisa Shokouhi, Soheil Nazarian

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

14 Scopus citations


A combination of impact echo (IE) and ultrasonic surface waves techniques was used to locate the debonding in concrete slabs at several locations on TX-225 near Houston, Texas. A portable seismic pavement analyzer (PSPA), a hand-held automated system, was used for seismic data collection in the field. Field measurements are presented in the time and frequency domains in the form of time records and amplitude spectra. The characteristics differentiating the response (time records) of fully bonded and debonded slabs are discussed. The frequency domain (spectral) analysis was shown to be superior to time domain analysis in describing the response of slabs in marginal condition (i.e., slabs showing partial debonding or horizontal cracks). On the basis of the spectral characteristics of their surface response, the slabs were categorized into four different categories: good, fair, poor, and bad conditions (in terms of debonding). Time-frequency analysis was proposed as a complementary tool for the analysis of DE signals. The test records were analyzed by a time-frequency analysis method and are presented in a two-dimensional time-frequency plane. The advantages of using a time-frequency technique over a spectral analysis are described. Finally, the debonding assessments made on the basis of PSPA measurements were verified by ground truth data.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationGeology and Properties of Earth Materials
PublisherNational Research Council
Number of pages11
ISBN (Print)9780309104432
StatePublished - 2007

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering


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