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Modeling of Passive Piles –An Overview

Kok Sien Ti
PhD student, Department of Civil Engineering, University Putra Malaysia, Serdang, Selangor, Malaysia Email:

Bujang B.K. Huat, Jamaloddin Noorzaei, Mohd Saleh Jaafar
Department of Civil Engineering, University Putra Malaysia, Serdang, Selangor, Malaysia Email:

Gue See Sew
CEO, G&P Geotechnics Sdn Bhd Bandar Tasik Selatan, KL, Malaysia

Piles subjected to lateral loading from the moving soils is known as passive piles. These passive load induces forces and bending moment in piles that can lead to serviceability problems or even failure of the piles itself. This area of research is not recent and there were countless works that has been documented for the last three decades. In this paper, a review was conducted based on existing literatures and then classified to address four topics, namely; pile subjected to horizontal soil movement, pile-supported embankment, piles for slope stabilization, piles adjacent to deep excavation and failures of piles in open excavation. In addition, this paper intends to present a general overview on the state-ofthe-art research for passive piles. Based on the summary, passive piles in open excavation may indeed proved to be another recent and significant area of research that should be emphasized, as this will have invaluable contribution to the deep foundation industry.

KEYWORDS: passive pile, horizontal moving soil, embankment, slope, excavation.

When piles are subjected to soil movement, these piles are known as passive piles. Soil movement is encountered in practice when piles are placed in an unstable slope, landslides, adjacent to deep excavation, tunnel operation, marginally stable riverbank with high fluctuating water level and also in piles supporting bridge abutment adjacent to approach embankments. The design of such piles may be based on the assumptions that forces from moving soil will act against the piles and ‘squeeze’ past the piles. On the other hand, active piles referred to a pile subjected to a external horizontal force. Refer Figure 1 for the differences between active and passive piles.

Vol. 14 [2009], Bund. P


Figure 1: (a) Active pile with length, L and diameter, B subjected to a point horizontal load, Q, acting with a distance e, from ground surface (Broms, 1965). (b) Passive pile in an embankment subjected to horizontal loading from moving soil past the piles (Ellis and Springman, 2001). The difference between load-transfer relationship for laterally loaded pile groups was defined in detail by Bransby (1996). In brief, only the passive lateral-definitions was described here. Pile displacement relative to the initial pile position is defined as δp, and the soil displacement midway between piles is defined as δs (Figure 2). An equivalent uniform displacement is defined as δeq so that, swept areas A1=A2. Therefore, δ=δeq-δp. This paper attempts to present an overview mainly for single pile in four topics, namely; pile subjected to horizontal soil movement, pile-supported embankment, pile for slope stabilisation, piles adjacent to deep excavation and failures of piles in open excavation. The author is aware that reviews had been done by some researchers extensively on a particular topic and complete efforts done may not be reported in this paper. Nevertheless, this paper presents an overview and brief description on collaborations from various researchers and present the discussion mainly to emphasize the significance of research on piles in open excavation.

Figure 2: Passive lateral loading (Displacement definitions), adapted from Bransby (1996).

an existing boundary element program was used to produce theoretical predictions. which agrees well with the experimental results. only if accurate assessment of horizontal soil movement can be made. noth Poulos et al (1995) and Chen et al (1997) have established similar testing and procedure to induce a triangular profile of horizontal soil movement with depth on the piles as shown in figure 3 below. the pile spacing. A number of theoretical expressions for soil movements are developed and presented. with adapting the same method. using a specified free-soil soil movement profiles. the ratio of the depth of moving soil to the pile embedded length.Vol. it is generally possible to obtain a satisfactory prediction of the pile response by the present method. Linear analysis was used for the piles and nonlinear analysis for the soil. pile diameter and stiffness on the pile’s maximum bending moment are investigated and relationship are presented in forms of normalized expressions. P 3 PILES SUBJECTED TO LATERAL SOIL MOVEMENT Early works in analyzing piles by using finite element code has been carried out by Desai & Appel (1976). researchers like Xu and Poulos (2001) employed a 3D coupled boundary element approach to analyze the response of vertical piles subjected to passive loadings such as soil shrink/swelling. soil movements arising from driving piles and cavity formation in soil. Influence of pile head fixity condition. namely position of the pile in the group. These expressions have been incorporated into the pile-soil governing equation previously developed by the authors. Figure 3: Model pile groups subjected to lateral soil movement (Chen et al. Chen et al (1997) proceed to present model tests on pile groups subjected to lateral soil movement in the same soil material. . by using a simplified boundaryelement analysis. where the group effect on the lateral response of a pile in a group was found to be dependant on a number of factors. the number of piles. tunneling. In this case. Shie & Brown (1991) and Brown & Shie (1992) did further work with finite elements and produced some useful results where else Wang (1986) did a comprehensive study of the various analytical methods that can be employed in analyzing a closely-spaced group of piles in moving soil. Subsequently. whom developed a three-dimensional finite-element code for the analysis of piles in a group in moving soil. 1997) As for recent analytical method adopted. In both papers. and the head fixity condition. However. 14 [2009]. soil surface surcharge. Poulos et al (1995) presented model test on single piles subjected to lateral soil movement embedded in calcareous sand. Subsequently. Bund. Chen and Poulos (1997) then proceeded to presents design charts for analyzing the lateral response of vertical piles subjected to lateral soil movements.

Pan et al (July 2002) carried out a three-dimensional finite element analyses to investigate the behaviour of single piles subjected to lateral soil movements and to determine the ultimate soil pressures acting along the pile shaft. This zone has been referred to as the discrete shear zone. Poulos (1995) reported that the prediction of soil lateral movements requires a knowledge of the distribution of lateral soil modulus and limiting lateral pile-soil pressure with depth. the magnitude of soil movement. Bund. Design of the reinforcement steel is controlled by the maximum bending moment developed in the pile. The test results also indicated that different distributions of limiting soil pressures along the pile shaft were developed for the single and coupled passive piles. For compatibility between the soil-pile interface elements. Pan et al. the pile head boundary conditions. 14 [2009]. The finite element analyses program ABAQUS was used for the analyses. Chaudhuri (2005) describes another analytical method for evaluating pile foundation response to lateral ground movement. Following this. (2000. A Mohr-Coulomb elastic-plastic constitutive model with large-strain mode was assumed for the soil.Vol. These plots can be used for estimating pile displacements and moments caused by lateral soil movement. The vonMises constitutive model was employed to model the non-linear stress-strain soil behaviour. The pile and soil were modelled using 20-node quadrilateral brick element with reduced integration. PILES FOR SLOPE STABILIZATION The slip surface of landslides in stiff clays of highly weathered rocks is substantially weaker (softer) than the materials above or below it. Dimensionless plots are developed to evaluate pile behaviour for different soil and geometric conditions. A model using beam on linear and nonlinear elastic foundations has been analyzed using the finite difference method. The analyses indicated that the behaviour of the pile was significantly influenced by the pile flexibility. 27-node quadrilateral brick elements with reduced integration were used to model the soil around the pile adjacent to the soil-pile interface. also known as dowel piles. 2002) conducted a series of laboratory model tests in soft clay was conducted to investigate the behaviour of single and coupled piles subjected to lateral soil movements and to determine the ultimate soil pressure acting on the pile shaft. P 4 Besides that. In addition to recent development in finite element modeling. The pile anchorage provides lateral bearing resistance near the base of the moving ground. One way to improve the resistance at the weak shear zone is by using isolated shear piles. . al (2006) carried out three-dimensional finite element analyses to investigate the response of a single pile when subjected to lateral soil movements. a distribution of free-field soil movements such as that shown in figure 4 appears to be appropriate. The three-dimensional finite element mesh used in the analysis was optimized taking into account the computing capacity limitations. and the free-field horizontal soil movements. For problems involving slope instability. Failure mechanisms are examined and are related to relative soil-pile stiffness and soil yielding. Shear piles are reinforced cylindrical piles that pass through the landslide and are anchored at their lower end in stable soil or bedrock. Miao et. the shape of the soil movement profile and the thickness of the moving soil mass. The pile was assumed to have linear elastic behaviour.

. Sommer (1977). shear force and bending moment. Morgenstern (1982). while cast-in-place reinforced concrete piles as large as 1. Nethero (1982). Flexible pile refers to pile with the moment of resistance equal to the induced bending moment at certain location. Driven timber piles have been used to reinforced the slope stability of very soft clays in Sweden. Rigid pile refers to pile with the moment of resistance that is more than the maximum bending moment induced. P 5 Figure 4: Basic problem of a pile in unstable slope: free-field soil movement. 14 [2009]. (1979). Ito and Matsui (1975). In the latter case. Bund. Gudehus and Schwarz (1985). In Japan. steel tubes piles of 300mm diameter have been used to stabilize active landslides areas (Taniguchi 1967) and Fukouka (1977) presented three real-life cases in Kanogawa Dam. followed by the soil reaction. Viaggiani (1981) suggested that a sliding slope may be stabilized by increasing its safety factor by a few percent besides presenting modes of failure for rigid and flexible pile as shown in figure 5 below. On the first column of each mode shows the pile displacement. (1982).Vol. Reese et al (1992) and Rollins and Rollins (1992). Ito et. Hokuriku Expressway in Fukue Prefecture and Higashitono where steel piles were used to improve the factor of safety of landslides. al. plastic hinge(s) may be formed in the pile. Poulos (1995) Some of the successful applications of such techniques have been reported by Esu and D’Elia (1974).5m diameter have been used in Europe and the United States to stabilize active landslides in stiff clays (Bulley 1965 and Offenberger 1981). Wang et al.

Bund. Reese et al. The pile response when subjected to external lateral soil movement from slope instability is analyzed by a modified boundary element method. However. 1981). Rowe and Poulos (1979) developed a two-dimensional finite element approach that allowed for the three dimensional effect of soil flowing through rows of piles. 1981). (1992) have presented a p-y approach for assessing the improvement in slope stability which arises from using piles. are analyzed which show that the numerical model can predict the general characteristics of the piles reasonably well. where piles are modeled using the modulus of subgrade reaction and the pile-soil-pile interaction considered using the theory of elasticity. Figure 6 below showed the portion of the piles embedded in the sliding slope subjected to large lateral soil movements where vertical soil movements are ignored here. P 6 Figure 5: (a) Modes of failure for rigid pile (after Viaggiani. (1995) presents a simplified approach to the study of a row of piles used for slope stabilization based on an uncoupled formulation in which the pile response and slope stability are considered separately. Two case histories. . may be conservative. Lee et al. A three dimensional finite element approach has been developed by Hassiotis & Chameau (1984) for the analysis of stabilization of surcharged slope with drilled piles. Chow (1996) presented an approach to analysis piles for slope stabilization. A conventional simplified Bishop slip circle approach is employed to analyze the slope stability. one for single pile and the other for pile group.Vol. 14 [2009]. (b) Modes of failure for flexible pile (after Viaggiani. this study suggest that the design of the piles based on the computed response from single pile analysis.

Vol. in which the pile response and the slope stability are considered simultaneously and subsequently the factors of safety are compared to a solution for a homogeneous slope using an uncoupled analysis (limit equilibrium analysis). Jeong et. which answers a central question of the research. Special attention is given to the coupled analysis based on the explicit-finite-difference code. . it is concluded that the finite element method appears to be effective to analyze this difficult problem. 14 [2009]. Coupled analyses were performed for stabilizing piles in a slope.(2003) and Won et al (2005) presented a numerical comparison of predictions by limit equilibrium analysis and 3D numerical analysis for a slope-pile system to investigated the response of the pile groups by using both coupled and uncoupled analysis. in which piles installed through a shear box were indirectly loaded by uniform lateral translation of soil. D=depth from toe of slope to a hard base. Laudeman and Chang (2004) discussed and tabulated a summary of available design methods based on a simple slope configuration analyzed by using finite element method. Based on this analysis. H =slope height. It is apparent from the pile load tests that small-diameter pile elements provide effective passive resistance to lateral soil movement. Thompson and White (2006) conducted a full-scale pile load test to investigate the soilstructure interactions for small-diameter piles subject to lateral soil movement. Bund. Instrumentation of the shear boxes and pile reinforcement indicated the load distributions that developed along the piles. 1995) Where s=spacing between piles. The product of the analysis. L=pile length and d=pile diameter. P 7 Figure 6: Simplified piled-soil stability analysis (Poulos. The load test analyses which succeeded the pile load tests support the claim that the distributed loads which are achieved during the pile loading vary linearly with depth. al. FLAC 3D. is directly incorporated into the proposed design methodology for the soil displacement grouted micropiles. It is found that the factor of safety in slope is much more conservative for an uncoupled analysis than for a coupled analysis based on three-dimensional finite element analysis. α=slope inclination angle.

bending moment and lateral deflection developed in the piles. The design of the piles therefore requires an assessment of the consequent axial force. Figure 7: Schematic section through a full-height piled bridge abutment constructed on soft clay illustrating the forms of lateral loading (Ellis and Springman. non-homogeneous soil by simulating pile-soil interaction using a series of springs distributed along the pile shaft where the stiffness of each spring is theoretically related to soil modulus. Ranges of input parameters are provided. The method cannot be used to calculate the variation of bending moment with depth along the pile. . Bund. Figure 7 shows a schematic section through such a structure. They assumed that a constant lateral pressure distribution acted on the pile in the soft layer. and hence may result in unserviceable behaviour of the abutment or bridge deck. De Beer & Wallays (1972) proposed a semi-empirical method to estimate the maximum bending moment for piles subjected to asymmetrical surcharges.Vol. They suggested that the lateral loading was caused by horizontal consolidation and creep. in light of predictions carried out to date against 62 tested piles in clay and sand. 14 [2009]. pile-soil relative stiffness and loading properties. illustrating the forms of interaction which tend to increase lateral structural loading and displacement. apparent angle of friction and the slope of a fictitious embankment of material of unit weight 18kN/m3. PILE-SUPPORTED EMBANKMENTS The consolidation of embankments on clay can cause significant vertical and horizontal movements of the soil beneath and adjacent to the embankment. The magnitude of this lateral pressure was a function of the total vertical overburden pressure. and the limiting force is catered for by a new generic expression. 2001). P 8 Guo (2006) presents a new closed-form solutions for a free-head pile embedded in an elasticplastic. Piles supporting the bridge abutments may therefore be subjected to axial and lateral loads which are induced by these soil movements. implying that their method was primarily intended to design piles in the long term. axial movement.

Based on the results of model tests at Princeton University in the 1940s and field measurements in New Jersey. the factor of safety against overall instability should be greater than 1.5 against rotational failure of the entire structure. Although this method allowed simple assessment of ultimate bending moment capacity required in piles. P 9 Therefore. they conservatively recommended that the piles should be reinforced over their whole length to carry the maximum calculated bending moment. with maximum pressure acting on the piles at mid-depth. isotropic elastic material. Based on research work by De Beer & Wallays (1972) and Begemann & De Leeuw (1972). boundary conditions. Once this pressure distribution was known. and an assumption of soil elasticity. Oteo (1977) derived design charts for calculating the maximum lateral displacement and bending moment in relatively flexible piles in soft soil subjected to adjacent surcharging. Also factors such as the variation of the strength of the soft clay with depth. he recommended an empirical approach of triangular lateral pressure distribution in the soft clay layer. However. The approach is very simple and proposes that a condition on ultimate foundation capacity may be used to assess the likelihood of significant soilstructure interaction. having a Young’s modulus and Poisson’s ratio which are unaffected by the presence of pile (which was modelled as a thin vertical strip). The soil in the analysis was assumed to be an ideal. Tschebotarioff (1973) summarized research work on piled abutments and suggested that even with a factor of safety of 1.e. Parametric studies using the finite difference method were carried out to study some of the factors influencing the development of pile moments and displacements. Two types of boundary conditions were studied: vertical loading without surface shear stress. it was not possible to estimate deformations. they demonstrated that the method is only suitable if a large margin of safety is provided against overall instability of the soil mass. the bending moment was calculated using equations from a structural handbook. the mechanism used assess the foundation capacity is likely to be a poor representation of the mechanism provoking soil-structure interaction. After calibrating the method against a few case studies. and the shear stress transfer mechanism underneath the embankment due to the lateral soil movement was not recognized. he followed the maximum pressure method proposed by Begemann & De Leeuw (1972). some comments were given regarding values of soil parameters required for practical problems. i. For stiff piles. which is discussed. shape and magnitude of soil movement profile and pile diameter. Poulos & Davis (1980) and Poulos (1994) derived a theoretical method to analyse the distributions of pressure and bending moment along a single pile subjected to a known lateral soil movement. 14 [2009]. Numerical examples were given to calculate lateral deformation of soil and earth pressure on both flexible and rigid piles. they assumed that the soil has an infinite dimension in the intermediate principal stress (horizontal) direction and that it deforms in an undrained condition. Begemann & De Leeuw (1972) used Airy’s stress function to derive closed form solutions for calculation of horizontal deformation and earth pressure distributions with depth in a layer of soft clay which is subjected to surcharge loading.Vol. by assuming full fixity at the pile cap and pin support at the interface between the soft clay and the underlying soil. Bund. homogeneous and isotropic material resting on a rigid base. and zero horizontal deformation at the loading surface. no comparison was given with any field observations.6. In addition. In addition. summarizing nineteen field observations. The magnitude of vertical stress included the combined weights of backfill and half of the height of the soft clay layer. They assumed that the soft soil is an elastic. In reality. the design of a bridge abutment on soft clay should take account of additional lateral load on the piles. The effect of soil-pile interaction was accounted for in a basic way. such as relative pile flexibility. relative soil-pile stiffness and any resulting displacement are ignored. .

disturbance of a soil zone around the pile and plastic yielding of soil in an undrained manner were also studied by means of the finite element method. Bransby’s relationships were considered the most relevant. Randolph & Houlsby (1984) used classical plasticity theory to derive exact solutions for limiting lateral resistance of a circular pile in cohesive soil. Bransby and Springman (1996) then proceeded to model the test by a three dimensional finite element analyses to study the shortterm behaviour of pile groups subjected to lateral pressures by deformation of a clay layer under an adjacent surcharge load. some simplified three dimensional analyses were carried out to investigate the effects of pile length. The influence of pile section (square or circular). A power law stress-strain relationship for the soil was introduced and group effects were considered using rectangular boundaries. (1977)’s load. al.94cu for perfectly smooth and perfectly rough piles respectively. The first step was to calculate overall stability of the retaining structure against circular slip failure using the method of slices. 14 [2009]. However. Using the data from centrifuge model test by Bransby (1995).transfer relationship was reinterpreted by Springman (1989) and Springman and Bolton (1990) for relative pile-soil displacement and was subsequently also used by Stewart et. the rectangular boundaries used by Bransby allow meaningful investigation of group effects. For an isolated pile. since the work corresponds to that used previously by Springman and Stewart et al. In addition. P 10 Some comparisons were made between observed pile bahaviour and predictions given by the theory. They reported that the limiting pressures that can develop were 9. since such pressures only result from fully developed plastic flow of soil past the piles. Baguelin et. expressed by lateral load on the pile based on the relative pile-soil lateral displacement and stiffness properties of the soil. However. Horizontal ground movement cannot be known in advance. the work was restricted to the undrained case. although the boundary conditions are slightly different. a load-transfer relationship was derived. Bund. using results from FEM analyses. Baguelin et. and reasonable agreement was obtained. Franke (1977) reported the design method adopted in Germany. in the case of isolated piles but also has the advantages that non-linear stress-strain behaviour and group effects can be incorporated. .14cu and 11. The work described above has been extended by Bransby (1995). al (1993) to describe pile-soil interaction in plane strain analyses of undrained passive pile loading. boundary and loading conditions. although ground movement distribution can be estimated from inclinometers installed on other similar sites or from finite element analysis. al. An analytical solution for the force required to displace a pile laterally relative to a distant rigid circular boundary was derived. This method would be difficult to apply in practice because the distribution of horizontal soil movement with depth is required as one of the input parameters.5cu acting on them in the soft soil layer. In cases where the factor of safety was not considered sufficiently high to guard against significant lateral soil movement.Vol. For the case of a rigid adherent circular disc (representing the cross-section of the pile. This approach could be particularly over-conservative under certain circumstances. The additional resistance to slip failure provided by piles which pass through the slip plane was ignored. which is displaced through a homogeneous linear elastic material (plane strain). it was recommended that the piles should be designed to withstand a uniformly distributed lateral pressure of 10. Their analyses were based on a perfectly plastic soil response. (1977) examined the mechanism of ‘load-transfer’ relationship. Baguelin’s method also corresponds approximately to that used by Bransby. The findings from the simplified analyses were compared with a case record and good agreement was obtained.

incorporation of the soil-structure by adapting Randolph (1981)’s method. The results confirmed the existence of established interaction effects due to lateral displacement of clay past piles. Bransby (1996) present a technical note which investigates the definition of the load transfer relationships for undrained passive and active lateral-pile loading suitable for pile design in clay. However. Carter (1982) also used the finite element method to investigate the bending moments and axial forces induced in a single pile embedded in the centre of an axissymmetric mesh and isotropic. Results from a series of two-dimensional finite element analyses were presented with interaction bahaviour being explained. This method attempts to eliminate the possibility of invalid solutions from Springman & Bolton’s formulation when the relative pile-soil stiffness is low and to provide a better representation of pile group behaviour. (1977). The technique allows good representation of the three dimensional nature of the problem. Analytical solutions were obtained to compute the maximum moment in the piles and the pile cap deflection. Moreover. al. Success of the method is illustrated by good comparison with the centrifuge test results. . Ellis and Springman (2001) presented an accompanying series of plane strain finite element analyses for the undertaken series of geotechnical centrifuge tests of full-height piled bridge abutments constructed on soft clay to study the soil-structure interaction effects. On the basis of the work described by Baguelin et. Bransby and Springman (1999) then used similar method to examine the effects of pile-soil-pile interaction on the load-transfer response for passive lateral loading in undrained soil. Recommendations were made that the applied embankment loading should be limited to less than three times the undrained shear strength of the soft stratum to avoid significant plastic deformation in the soft layer. Following this. no shear force is considered to act at the pile cap level. The method approximates the behaviour of a pile group as a single beam with fixed support at the base and a moment at the top which prevents rotation whilst allowing lateral deflection. leading to the assumption that the same horizontal load acts on all rows of piles. although pile groups cannot be analyzed directly unless a rigid pile cap can be approximated by imposing zero rotation of the pile head. and these may be used for design. which was initially investigated by Springman and Bolton (1990). A series of normalized charts were produced. perfectly elastic soil mass. corrections were applied to the embankment geometry to account for distinct variations from the infinite strip load assumed in the proposed analysis. The effects of vertical drains in the clay layer for embankment was investigated by Ellis (1997) through a series of geotechnical centrifuge tests examining the effect of clay layer depth and the rate of embankment construction. The analytical results compare well with the two centrifuge tests. al (1993) proposed a modified method to relate the lateral pressure acting on the pile to an approximate relative soil-pile displacement. Stewart (1992) and Stewart et. In order to match the observed behaviour from model centrifuge tests carried out by Stewart (1992). P 11 Subsequently also from Bransby (1995).Vol. Bund. Interaction factors suitable for design use to account for increasing lateral pressure on piles have been produced for a range of pile spacing and power law soil exponents. 14 [2009]. a non-linear stress-strain curve for kaolin was incorporated into the method to account for the observed non-linear behaviour. Loading on a circular arc and surface strip loading extending to one side of the pile were studied with various pile geometry.pile stiffness. Although some aspects of the structure do not conform to a plane strain analysis (most notably the piles). end fixities and relative soil.

an approach used by a road authority in Australia. maximum axial force in pile and axial pile head settlement. 14 [2009]. P 12 For piles to support a retaining wall. Some of the methods being reviewed are the method of Tschebotarioff (1973). . Poulos (1996) reviewed some available methods for design of piles through embankment and presented comparison between these methods for maximum bending moment in the piles. lateral pile head deflection. are based on the use of the equivalent-fluid method and a perusal of the charts shows the importance of the selection of an appropriate material for the backfill. Bund. Stewart (1992). It concludes that none of the previously available methods appears able to provide a consistent means of estimating the lateral response of piled embankment (Refer to figure 8 and table 1 below). a simplified analysis of pile downdrag and design charts developed from boundary element analyses of pile-soil interaction. 1996) Table 1: Summary of results for idealized hypothetical case. A comparison of values from theory with values from the charts shows that the charts are close to those from Rankine’s theory for active earth pressure.Vol. Figure 8: Idealized hypothetical case (Poulos. the assumption is implicit in the Terzaghi charts that the wall is capable of some movement without distress if the pressures from the backfill were greater than the chart values. Therefore. the recommendations of Terzaghi et al. De Beer and Wallays (1972). (1996) embodied in charts.

Vol. Ong et al. Such soil movement would in turn induce lateral loading on adjacent pile foundations. The research also investigates the influence of head fixity and shows that behind the stable . (2003). Finno et al. Evaluation of effects of movements on the adjacent piles were then carried out using a plane strain finite element code. The uncertainty of modeling the equivalent bending stiffness of the pile group in plane strain resulted in lower and upper bound solution. These deep excavations would cause lateral soil movement behind the excavation. (2000) presented the results of centrifuge tests of an adjacent single pile behind a unstrutted stable and failed wall of a deep excavation in dense sand. Refer Figure 10 below. The interaction between the soil and the pile is modeled by a series of non-linear horizontal springs represented by a hyperbolic equation. Leung et al. Initially. Recent efforts in centrifuge modelling of passive piles adjacent to unbraced excavation was done by Leung et al. inducing additional bending moment and deflection on the piles. (2006) and Leung et al (2006). However. deep excavation for basement construction and other underground facilities such as mass rapid transit stations and cut-and-cover tunnels is unavoidable. accuracy of the approach could not be clearly verified due to less certainty with the selection of soil parameters. Poulos & Chen (1996) did a two stage analysis by use of the finite-element method and the boundary-element method to analyze the response of piles due to unsupported excavationinduced lateral soil movement in clay. For example. (2003) used the soil movements measured by an in-soil inclinometer as the free-field lateral soil movement. P 13 PILES ADJACENT TO DEEP EXCAVATION In dense urban environment where land is scare and buildings are closely spaced. These generated soil movements are then used as input into a boundary element method to analyze the pile’s response as shown in figure 9 below: Figure 9: “Standard” problem analyzed (Poulos and Chen. especially the soil’s modulus because of the lack of detailed laboratory or in situ testing. Initially. (2003) presented the results of an actual full-scale instrumented study carried out to examine the behaviour of an existing pile due to nearby excavation of a 16m deep excavation with the in-soil inclinometer was installed about 6m away . (2000). The instrumented existing pile was analyzed as a single where it is discretized into a finite number of discrete (linear elestic) beam elements. that is the soil movement that would occur. Bund. Goh et al. 1996) On the contrary. (1991) reported the analyses and performance of groups of steptapered piles located adjacent to a 50-ft-deep tieback excavation. 14 [2009]. a plane strain finite element method was used to simulate the excavation procedure and to generate free-field soil movements. Goh et al. Leung et al.

2006) in clay. In this model. al. PILES IN OPEN EXCAVATION Recent years have seen rapid development with countless high-rise structures and massive infrastructures. Although some countries practice excavation work before piles installation to protect the integrity of the piles. There are limited resources reporting on the behaviour of these piles. (2003) extended the centrifuge test to pile groups. there are increasing number of cases where piles failed in open excavation. 2006) and instable wall (Leung. it is inevitable that deep foundations had become the primary choice for these structures. As land’s availability was becoming more scarce. further investigation was done for single pile behind stable wall (Ong. except for the case of Poulos and Chen (1996). it is inevitable in some conditions where limited construction space does not permit open excavation. P 14 wall. Recently. the pile is modeled as a series of linear elastic beam elements and the soil is idealized using the modulus of subgrade reaction. where free-field soil movement profiles were used as the input soil movements. Bund. incorporating the effects of interaction factors between the piles with different head fixities. This numerical method has been also adopted successfully to back-analyze the centrifuge model tests on a single pile in sand reported by Leung et al (2000) earlier. Leung et al. the soil is modeled as an elastic continuum. (2000) Following Leung et al. Subsequently. These conditions are likely to happen when deep excavation had to be carried out after the installation of piles. especially where construction of multi-level basements were involved. Figure 10: Centrifuge model setup (Prototype dimension given in parentheses) by Leung et. (1997) and Poulos and Chen (1996). It is concluded that calculated pile response is in good agreement with the measured data if correct shear strength obtained from post-excavation was used in numerical analysis. (2000). the pile head deflection and maximum bending moment for the free-headed pile decreases exponentially with increasing distance from the wall. The approach is similar to that of two much earlier studies by Goh et al. The numerical analysis was based on a simplified model (Chow and Yong. 1996) and was used to back-analyze the responses of single pile subjected to lateral soil movements in clay.Vol. . 14 [2009]. Excavation in soft soil will further complicate the work as excessive horizontal soil movement from the soft soil will induce additional load on the piles.

(2009) presents a case study in West Malaysia for passive piles failure in very soft marine clay in open excavation. Kok et al. Preliminary site investigation reported SPT ‘N’ value of zero for the very soft marine clay. In this particular case. inducing bending moment in the piles and resulted in some cracked and broken piles.. 2009) . Bund. Deep foundation using piles were used in design to support the superstructure. (1998) presented four case histories of pile damage associated with excavation works in Bangkok soft clay. 14 [2009]. During pile cap construction. Figure 11: Picture showing a 3-pile group of broken piles (Kok et al. The failures were confirmed by high strain dynamic load test and also modelled by a two-dimensional finite element to predict the response of the piles. 2009) Figure 12: Picture showing a group of 6 pile group of broken piles (Kok et al. P 15 Thasnanipan et al. In addition. the piles were subjected to uncontrolled open excavation.. the thickness of the very soft marine clay ranges from 5m to 7m from the ground surface.Vol. Some of the pictures of the broken pile groups are shown in Figures 11 and 12.

10m 4. there is limited method available. The author believes that all of these state-of-the-art method are widely accepted as it is supported by comparison with field and lab data. numerous efforts were found starting from over the last three decades. especially in terms of design charts to predict the response of piles in soft clay excavation. To date. Of all the publications compiled and reviewed for passive loading on piles. resulting in broken piles. Broken pile 9. 2009) Regardless of all the efforts done on passive pile behaviour adjacent to supported or unsupported excavation. significant of piles adjacent to excavation gained interest of researchers from the beginning of the last decade as field test and centrifuge test data has been presented for single and pile groups adjacent to unbraced excavation. Figure 14 shows the summary of literature review done on passive piles. PLAXIS 3D FOUNDATION with a non-linear soil model. 14 [2009]. also incorporating the influence of group interaction factors. The configuration of the final excavation phase generated in the analysis is shown in figure 13 below.Vol. Together with this. resulting in excessive lateral soil movements which may induce bending moment which exceeds the pile’s cracking moment. method of analysis by using plane strain finite element method incorporated with subgrade reaction and elastic continuum formulation has been widely used. P 16 The analyses were carried out using an existing three-dimensional finite element code. Bund. Various approaches from theoretical and analytical to finite element method has been adapted to predict the response of the piles. . there are still limited resources on pile response in an open excavation. On the contrary.5m 3. CONCLUSION A comprehensive literature review was conducted to examine the current state of knowledge regarding passive piles. behind stable and unstable wall. Hardening-Soil to predict the response of these piles during excavation. The similarities of the applicability of these methods is that a specified free-field soil movement have to be inputted in the numerical method to analyze the response of the piles. where major emphasis was placed on the first three groups.10m Figure 13: Excavation profile for final phase of staged construction (Kok et al.

P 17 Although research on piles adjacent to an excavation seemed to be recent. & Fdn. Conf. Soil Mech. 14 [2009]. there seemed to be a missing gap in research for piles in an open excavation. ACKNOWLEDGEMENT Authors wishes to record their appreciation to the Ministry of Higher Education Malaysia for funding this research under the Fundamental Research Grant Scheme. the author would like to highlight that a three-dimensional modelling would offer another excellent alternative to study the response of this piles in an open excavation. Begemann. Engrg. It is also important to note that previous researchers have emphasied that effective and reliable prediction of the pile’s response could only be carried out only if the accurate magnitude of lateral soil movement could be known. 1: 1-9. Bund. this review indirectly highlights another area of research that is significant and would contribute to the existing literature and the deep foundation industry.Vol. and De Leeuw. “Horizontal Earth Pressures on Foundation Piles as Result of Nearby Soil Fills. Frank. “Theoretical study of lateral reaction mechanism of piles”. Figure 14: Summary of literature review-Lateral passive loading on piles.H. . F. and Said. (1977). 5th Eur.. Madrid. 27. No. Therefore. E. R. pp.H.. Vol. REFERENCES 1. (1972). 3.. 405-434. Y. 2. Only few cases of piles failures have been reported.S. Conclusively. Baguelin. which for most cases is a source of great uncertainty.K. H.” In Proc. Geotechnique.

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