LWD Research Papers

The Lightweight Deflectometer (LWD) research papers cover the following applications:

    • Flexible Pavements and Rigid Pavements
    • Intelligent Compaction and In-Situ Testing (Stiffness Control)
    • Rail
    • Mobile Crane Pad and Piling Rig Working Platforms
    • Mining

The last section deals with Understanding the Light Weight Deflectometer (LWD) and its Results and Comparative Studies between the Light Weight Defectometer and other Devices.

Flexible Pavements and Rigid Pavements

Characterisation of in-situ soils based on the resilient soil modulus obtained using Light Weight Deflectometer (LWD) – N.Barounis & T.Smith – New Zealand Geotechnical Society – Nov 2017
Standardizing Lightweight Deflectometer Measurements for Compaction QA and Modulus Determination in Unbound Bases and Subgrades – Schwartz, Afsharikia, Khosravifar – Maryland DOT – University of Maryland – Sept 2017

Includes AASHTO Drafts:

Standard Method of Test for Laboratory Determination of Target Modulus Using Light-Weight Deflectometer (LWD) Drops on Compacted Proctor Mold – AASHTO Designation: TP 123-01 (2017)

Standard Method of Test for Compaction Quality Control Using Light Weight Deflectometer (LWD) – AASHTO Designation: TP 456-01 (2017)

Modulus-Based Construction Specification for Compaction of Earthwork and Unbound Aggregate – Transportation Research Board – NCHRP Project 10-84 – Nazarian et al – Aug 2014

Final Report


Non-Nuclear Methods for Compaction Control of Unbound Materials – Transportation Research Board – NCHRP 20-05/Topic 44-10 Synthesis 456 – Nazzal – 2014
Foamed Asphalt Stabilized Base – A Case Study – Khosravifar, Schwartz & Goulias – University of Maryland – 2013
Field Evaluation Of In-Situ Test Technology For QA/QC During Construction Of Pavement Layers And Embankments – Nazzal – 2013
Validation And Refinement Of Chemical Stabilization Procedures For Pavement Subgrade Soils In Oklahoma (Miller, Cerato, Snethen, Holderby & Boodagh – Oklahoma DOT Oct 2011
Unsaturated Soil Mechanics Implementation During Pavement Construction Quality Assurance John Siekmeier, Minnesota Department of Transportation – 21st Annual CTS Transportation Research Conference – April 27-28, 2010
The Effect of Water Content on Light Weight Deflectometer Measurements – University of Deleware – Tehrani & Meehan – 2010
Performance Testing Of Unbound Materials Within The Pavement Foundation – Scott Wilson Pavement Engineering for UK Highways Agency – 2010
Pavement Foundation Stiffness Compliance Testing – A New Regime (2009) – Loughborough University, UK
Using the Dynamic Cone Penetrometer and Light Weight Deflectometer for Construction Quality Assurance – Minnesota DOT – 2009
A Review Of The Lightweight Deflectometer (Lwd) For Routine Insitu Assessment Of Pavement Material Stiffness – Loughborough University – TRB Annual Meeting 2007 (Fleming, Frost, and Lambert)
Implementation of Unsaturated Soil Mechanics during Pavement Construction QA John Siekmeier Article
Application of the Modern Method Embankment Compaction Control – Bailystok Techical University – Poland (Sept 2003)
United Kingdom and Ireland Falling Weight Deflectometer Group
PFWD, CBR and DCP Evaluation of Lateritic Subgrades of Dakshina Kannada, India – 2008

Intelligent Compaction and In-Situ Testing (Stiffness Control)

Intelligent Compaction Portal
US DOT FHWA Accelerated Implementation of Intelligent Compaction Technology for Embankment Subgrade Soils, Aggregate Base, and Asphalt Pavement Materials – Final Report – July 2011
International Intelligent Compaction and In-Situ Testing (Stiffness Control) Update – Insitu Test – Feb 2010
Intelligent Compaction Implementation: Research Assessment – University of Minnesota (July 2008)
Intelligent Compaction for Soils and Subbase Materials – US DOT FHWA (US Department of Transport Federal Highway Authority) – Transportation Pooled Fund Program Summary
Field Validation of Intelligent Compaction Monitoring Technology for Unbound Materials – Iowa State University (2007)


Geotechnical Studies for the Adelaide Rail Revitalisation Project – Comparing In-Situ and Laboratory Testing of Ballast & Subgrade Materials – Parsons Brinckerhoff Mark Drechsler & Chad Parken – Railway Engineering Conference Sept 2010
Network Rail BOMAG Report RevG Roller Compaction Trials
Application of the Modern Method Embankment Compaction Control – Bailystok Techical University – Poland (Sept 2003)
Geotechnical investigation of a French conventional railway track-bed for maintenance purposes – Lamas-Lopez, Cui, Costa D’Aguiar, Calon – SNCF – Soils and Foundations – Japanese Geotechnical Society Dec 2015

A comparison of two methods of determining the stiffness of track-bed materials (dynamic penetration and dynamic plate load) comparing the PANDA / PANDOSCOPE and the Light Weight Deflectometer.

Mobile Crane Pad and Piling Rig Working Platforms

Working Platforms – To BRE or not to BRE is the question – Burt Look Foundation Specialists Group (Brisbane, Australia) and Neil Honeyfield Port of Brisbane (Brisbane, Australia) AGS Journal – 2016

The Building Research Establishment (BRE) produced a practice guide for working platforms for tracked plant, which has become a “standard” in the industry in the absence of any other widely published simple design method. The BRE design method does not apply for thick platforms or for soft subgrades, but continues to be used in those applications in the absence of an alternative document. A case study is discussed which applies the BRE in such a situation, but then compares with alternative methods (including the Light Weight Deflectometer) to assess the required working platform.

Reliability in the Testing and Assessing of Piling Work Platforms (Cranes Outriggers & Piling Rigs temporary pads and mats) – Balfour Beatty – Ground Engineering – 2012


Use of the Lightweight Deflectometer (LWD) at Highland Valley Copper Mine

Understanding the Lightweight Deflectometer (LWD) and its Results

Influence of Lightweight Deflectometer Characteristics on Deflection Measurement – D. Stamp. and M. Mooney – ASTM Geotechnical Testing Journal, Vol. 36, No. 2, pp. 216–226 – 2013
 ZFG 2000 Understanding Results Paper – Prof. Dr. Ing. W. Weingart – 2005
Investigation of the Dynamic Plate Load Test with Light-Weight Deflectometer using the Boundary Element Method (Kopf, Adam & Paulmichl) 2005
Modelling of Dynamic Load Plate Test with LWD (Vienna University of Technology, Austria) – 2003

Comparative Studies between the Light Weight Deflectometer (LWD) and other Devices

Best practice in compaction quality assurance for pavement and subgrade materials – National Asset Centre of Excellence (NACOE) – Queensland Department of Transport and Main Roads and the Australian Road Research Board (ARRB) – P60

The research included the Zorn Light Weight Deflectometer, the Anix Instrumented Plate Load Test and PANDA Instrumented DCP.

NACOE Advanced methods for compaction quality control 2018 June Webinar – Part 1Advanced methods for compaction quality control – Webinar 26 June 2018 – Part 1

Best Practice in Compaction QA for Pavement and Subgrade Materials Year 1 Report Jeffrey Lee, David Lacey & Burt Look NACOE P60 QLD DTMR, Australia Aug 2017
NACOE Advanced Methods for Compaction Quality Control – June 2018 Webinar – Part 1 (Webinar Slides)