Bassett’s guide to instrumentation in geotechnics

14 March 2012

A new guide to instrumentation in geotechnical engineering was launched on Monday. Written by Richard Bassett, emeritus reader in geotechnics at University College London, it was produced with the intent of assisting contractors, consultants and designers, as well as anyone studying geotechnics.

The book begins with the philosophy of such instrumentation and covers basic soil mechanics and displacements, before approaching survey techniques and instrument variety.

At the launch in the Council Room of the Institution of Civil Engineers, London, UK, Bassett said, “What I wanted people to get from the book is: why you are putting instrumentation in, what you get out of it and who is responsible for dealing with the data. See what it can do for you, pass it on, and importantly teach juniors.”

A spokesman for itmsoil, which worked with Bassett on the book, said, “Bassett graduated from Cambridge University in 1959 with an MA in Engineering, joining Binnie & Partners for whom he worked on various projects, particularly dam design and construction, around the globe. Returning to Cambridge he undertook a PhD on the fundamental behaviour of soils with the late Professor Roscoe.

“He joined Balfour Beatty and headed up their geotechnical section for a number of years. Returning once again to academia, Bassett taught at Cambridge before moving to University College London (UCL) in 1971. He retired from full time teaching in 2006.”

Bassett’s book will be available to attendees at a new short course on geotechnical instrumentation being held on 13-14 March this year. One day will be at University College London and the other at the Uckfield, Sussex, premises of instrumentation manufacturer and service provider itmsoil.

For more information on the course visit the provider’s website on

To buy ‘A Guide to Field Instrumentation in Geotechnics’ by Bassett for GBP 90 (USD 141.5) visit