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Federal Highway Administration > Publications > Focus > February 2002 > Welcome to the Word of Nondestructive Testing
February 2002Publication Number: FHWA-RD-02-007

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Welcome to the Word of Nondestructive Testing

Looking to learn more about nondestructive and innovative testing (ND&IT) for concrete? A new workshop developed by the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) provides a comprehensive review of the latest ND&IT for concrete in highway applications. The workshop places particular emphasis on in-place measurement of early-age properties of concrete.

A pilot workshop will be hosted by the Maryland State Highway Administration on April 9-11, 2002, with additional workshops to follow across the country. The workshop will cover:

  • Theory and background for ND&IT technologies
  • Advantages and disadvantages of ND&IT equipment
  • Hands-on testing with the equipment
  • Typical specifications and Quality Control/Quality Assurance (QC/QA) testing plans using nondestructive testing techniques.

Participants will have the opportunity to gain hands-on experience with some of the testing equipment covered, such as the Concrete Thickness Gauge and equipment for measuring pulse velocity, maturity, and tensile bond strength. The workshop will also include demonstrations of other testing equipment, such as the Air Void Analyzer and technology for performing the impact-echo test and spectral analysis of surface waves.

Nondestructive testing has the advantages of measuring in-place properties of the concrete and providing rapid results, while causing minimal damage to the concrete. NDT is also cost-effective and permits more testing to be done than if conventional methods were used. These testing techniques are becoming increasingly important as the pavement industry moves toward using performance-related specifications, warranties, high-performance concrete, and extended life pavements.

Photo of a Maturity Meter
Photo of impact-echo test
This Maturity Meter is measuring the pavement's compressive and flexural strength.
This picture shows the impact-echo test being performed.
Photo of core sample
Photo of Air Void Analyzer
This core sample was taken from a distressed pavement.
Shown here is the Air Void Analyzer.

For more information on the workshop, contact Gary Crawford at FHWA, 202-366-1286 (fax: 202-493-2070; email:

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Updated: 02/20/2015

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