Ultrasonic pulse velocity test of concrete properties as specified in various standards

K. Komloš, S. Popovics, T. Nürnbergerová, B. Babál, J. S. Popovics

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This is a review paper comparing critically eight standards. Methods for the determination of longitudinal pulse velocity and assessment of concrete properties by ultrasonic pulse velocity, as recommended by standards of the UK, USA, Germany, Russia, Slovakia, Hungary, and RILEM, are evaluated. It is shown that, despite the common basis of the measurement of ultrasonic longitudinal wave velocity, there are differences among the procedures as recommended by different nations. For instance, the most frequent use of pulse velocity, the assessment of concrete strength, is discussed only briefly in ASTM and in DIN; the other standards, especially the Russian and the Slovak standards, provide much more detail and description. The assessments of other concrete properties are also compared: dynamic elastic constants, defects inside concrete, concrete uniformity, and changes in concrete properties with time. The inherent uncertainty in the various assessments is so high that the assessments are not suitable for many practical purposes. The common weakness of the analyzed standards is that they do not warn the user strongly enough about the uncertainties. For instance, the assessment procedures could be rated according to their reliability.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)357-364
Number of pages8
JournalCement and Concrete Composites
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1996
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Building and Construction
  • General Materials Science


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