Encyclopedia of Engineering Geology

2018 Edition
| Editors: Peter T. Bobrowsky, Brian Marker

Cross Sections

  • Michael de FreitasEmail author
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-73568-9_72


Illustrations of the geology that lie vertically below the line defining the position of that section on a map.

The line of section can be one straight line or a number of straight lines, each joined to its neighbor but following a different direction from its neighbor, or occasionally, the line can be curved. The vertical scale used in most geological cross sections differs from the horizontal scale so that detail over a vertical distance of tens of meters can be shown over horizontal distances of thousands of meters. This means that distance on these sections can only be measured accurately in the vertical and horizontal direction. Any angle measured between points on such a section is a distortion of the real angle between those points. For engineering purposes, it is therefore advisable to use vertical and horizontal scales that are identical.

The accuracy of sections is usually constrained by boreholes where the vertical profile is known correctly; extrapolations...

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  1. de Freitas MH (2009) Geology; its principles, practice and potential for Geotechnics. (Ninth Glossop lecture). Q J Eng Geol Hydrogeol 42:397–441. (see pages 409-413)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Excellent tutorials on U-tube; Insert drawing geological cross sections. e.g. Oregon State University (OSU ECampus). https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vgo8Z63n60g

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Imperial College LondonLondonUK
  2. 2.Reader Emeritus in Engineering Geology, First Steps Ltd.LondonUK