The initial goal was to devise an engineering classification system for intact rock samples based on simple index tests which could be used to categorize Kentucky surface and near-surface rock types and assist Kentucky Department of Transportation personnel in planning for transportation facilities. While conducting the literature survey, several facts become apparent:

  1. a large number of rock classification systems, geologic and technical, general and specific, already existed;
  2. an equally large number of index tests had been devised; and
  3. there was a lack of communication among those involved in specialized areas of rock-related work (geologists, civil engineers, mining engineers, etc.), and, to some extent, among individuals within each field.

It was evident from a careful study of existing classification systems and index testing procedures that developing yet another "specialized" classification system with associated index tests would not be a significant contribution. It was decided, therefore, to concentrate on development of an overall rock evaluation schema which, while useful for a specific purpose, would avoid the undesirable disparate characteristics of narrowness or over-generalization prevalent in many classification systems. It was desired also to develop the program format in such a way that accumulated information could be systematically stored for easy access and use. It was apparent that full development and implementation of a program of this nature would require years of further studies and cooperation of many individuals and organizations. Such a program, properly developed and used, would substantially contribute to an advancement and a delineation of the schema and guidelines for its implementation would be a worthy goal.

Report Date


Report Number

No. 390

Digital Object Identifier



The contents of this report reflect the views of the authors who are responsible for the facts and the accuracy of the data presented herein. The contents do not necessarily reflect the official views or policies of the Bureau of Highways. This report does not constitute a standard, specification, or regulation.