DFI Journal - The Journal of the Deep Foundations Institute

Volume 3, Issue 1, January 2009

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Evaluating Axial Elastic Pile Response from Cone Penetration Tests (Vol. 3 No. 1)

Paul W. Mayne; Fawad S. Niazi


Axial pile performance can be rationally evaluated within an elastic continuum framework using field results from seismic piezocone tests (SCPTu). Adopting a versatile Randolph-type elastic pile model, the approach can be applied to either traditional top down loading using an anchored reaction beam or the newer Osterberg cell that simultaneously pushes the base and shaft in opposite directions. The axial load distribution within the shaft is also evaluated. For site-specific data at a given site, the SCPTu is an optimal means for collection of subsurface information because it combines penetrometer readings and downhole geophysics in one sounding. The results obtained are at opposite ends of the stress-strain-strength curves, specifically the peak strength for capacity interpretations and the small-strain stiffness (Emax) for evaluating the initial deformations. Axial pile capacity can be analysed using both direct and indirect CPT methods. As such, the approach allows for a complete representation of the axial load-displacement-capacity curve for pile response. Case studies are presented for deep foundations situated in stiff clays at two national geotechnical test sites located in Houston and College Station, Texas, using top down loading, as well as a third case study of a drilled shaft in clay till loaded by O-cell in Alberta.

bored piles, cone, shafts, o-cell, side friction