- Copyright: © 2005 This is an Open Access article: verbatim copying and redistribution of this article are permitted in all media for any purpose, provided this notice is preserved along with the article's original URL.
Although in recent years surface wave methods have undergone significant development that has greatly enhanced their capabilities, little effort has been spent to determine the uncertainty associated with surface wave measurements. The objective of this study is to determine how the uncertainty of the experimental data is mapped into the uncertainty of the shear wave velocity profile via the inversion algorithm. The methodology developed in this study for estimating the uncertainty of the shear wave velocity profile from surface wave measurements is based on the assumption that the experimental data are normally distributed. The validity of this hypothesis was experimentally verified using data gathered at two sites in Italy where surface wave tests were performed using linear arrays of multiple receivers. The experimental dispersion curve measured at the site was subsequently inverted to obtain the expected shear wave velocity profile together with an estimate of the associated standard deviation. The final results show that uncorrelated noise has a very little influence on multistation surface wave tests, confirming their robustness for applications in noisy environments.