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Bearing Capacity from SPT and CPT

The Standard Penetration Test (SPT) -1927 ASTM D 1586 –(since 1958), BS 1377; Part 9

The test consists of the following.

1. Driving the standard split-barrel sampler of dimensions shown in

Fig. 3-5a a distance of 460 mm into the soil at the bottom of the

boring.

2. Counting the number of blows to drive the sampler the last two

150 mm distances (total = 300 mm) to obtain the N number.

3. Using a 63.5 kg driving mass (or hammer) falling "free" from a

height of 760 mm

The boring log shows refusal and the test is halted if,

1. 50 blows are required for any 150 mm increment.

2. 100 blows are obtained (to drive the required 300 mm).

3. 10 successive blows produce no advance.

Blow count would be directly related to the driving energy, which is theoretically equals to;

E in = Wh

Where E in = Input driving Energy W=Weight of hammer (63.5 kg) h = height of free fall (760 mm)

Dilatancy Correction – for Dense Silty sands

τ = cʹ+ (σ-u) tan φʹ

When u decreases, τ increases, and hence SPT number N increases

Ncorr. = 15 + 0.5 (N-15)

The actual input driving energy E a to the sampler to produce penetration ranged from about 30 to 80 percent;

These discrepancies appear to arise from factors such as the following.

1. Equipment from different manufacturers

2. Drive hammer configurations

3. Lift-drop mechanism of the hammer

4. Whether a liner is used inside the split barrel sampler

5. Overburden pressure. Oversize boreholes on the order of 150 to 200 mm will also reduce N unless a rotary hollow-stem auger is used with the auger left in close contact with the soil in the hole bottom

6. Length of drill rod. Above about 10 m the rod length does not seem critical; however, for shorter lengths and N < 30 it is.

The standard blow count Nʹ 70 can be computed from the measured N as follows.

η i = adjustment factors Nʹ 70 = Adjusted N value C N = adjustment for effective overburden pressure pʹ o (kPa)

Note that the (energy ratio X blow count) should be a constant for any soil.

Allowable Bearing Capacity for a 25 mm settlement is given by

q a = allowable bearing pressure for ΔH 0 = 25-mm or 1-in. settlement, kPa or ksf Kd = 1 + 0.33(D/B) 1.33

For mat foundations (for a settlement of 25 mm)

In general, the allowable pressure for any settlement ΔH j is,