Assessing the unpaved shoulder of an airport runway for pavement construction using the lightweight penetrometer LRS 10

  • Abidemi Olujide Ilori
Technical Paper


In upgrading the facilities of an International Airport in Southeastern Nigeria, the runway pavement is to be strengthened by increasing the asphalt concrete overlay thickness and introducing open-graded friction course beneath the overlay. As part of the runway upgrading, the hitherto grassed shoulder will be replaced with full flexible pavement. In evaluating the grassed shoulder a lightweight penetrometer LRS 10 was employed. The LRS 10 was deployed at an interval of 240 m on both shoulders. Most part of the shoulder length indicates penetration index (PI) values between 3.57 mm/blow and 8.8 mm/blow giving equivalent California Bearing Ratio (CBR) values in the range of 79–30% from the ground surface to about 0.40 m depth, and higher values of penetration index beyond the 0.40 m depth. There are few bands from the ground surface to 0.40 m depth in which the PI values are between 9.09 and 33.3 mm/blow; with equivalent CBR values of 29 –7%, respectively. The LRS 10 also indicate that the shoulders are characterized by soil with medium dense consistencies, with loosely dense soil occurring in those bands with high penetration index values. Soil classification of the shoulder indicates sandy clay, silty sand (SM) soils, except pockets of areas with high penetration index which are characterized with organic clays. Based on this investigation, an Earthworks program was developed for the proposed shoulder pavement construction. Correlation of the two methods of analysis employed to interpret the LRS 10 data leads to resolving one of the major limitations of the LRS 10 penetrometer.


Runway Port Harcourt LRS 10 Penetration index CBR 


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Civil Engineering, Faculty of EngineeringUniversity of UyoUyoNigeria

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