The propagation property of acoustic waves in geomaterials has long been studied for evaluating material properties. Biot (1956a,b, 1962), Morse (1952) and Urick (1948) initiated the pioneering study in this area, Attenborough (1982, 1983), Stoll (1980) and Stoll and Bryan (1970) enhanced and refined the physics of acoustic wave propagation in geo-materials, Mu et al. (1999) and Abousleiman et al, (1994) developed the formulations for more complicated conditions, and Sabatier et al. (1990, 1996), Lu et al. (2003), Oelze et al. (2001), Berryman (2005) and Yamamoto (2003) opened the era of wide application of acoustic waves for characterizing properties of geo-materials such as porosity, stress level and surface roughness.
The primary difference of acoustic wave from seismic wave is that its frequency range and convenience of excitation frequency control. Analyzing the frequency dependent response of geomaterials, new properties of soils can be found (permeability). Additionally, using Electro-Kinetic-Hydraulic coupled relations, new instrumentations for measuring the wave may be developed.