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Chapter Subject


Shallow foundation

Deep Foundation




a) Shallow Foundation System
i) Spread Foundation
ii) Mat / Raft Foundation
b) Deep Foundation System
i) Pile

iii) Diaphragham wall

ii) Pile walls

iv) Caissons

Chapter 1
Shallow foundation

Those which transfer the loads to subsoil at a point near to the ground floor of the
building such as strips and raft. A shallow foundation is a type of foundation which transfers
building loads to the earth very near the surface, rather than to a subsurface layer or a range of
depths as does a deep foundation. Shallow foundations include spread footing foundations, raft
foundation known as mat-slab foundations, slab-on-grade foundations, strip foundations,
buoyancy foundations, pad foundations, rubble trench foundations, and earth bag foundations.
These foundation is according to BS 8004 : 1986.
Shallow foundations are taken to be those where the depth below finished ground level is
less than 3 m and include strip, pad and raft foundations. Shallow foundations where the depth
breadth ratio is high may need to be designed as deep foundations . Shallow foundations are
those foundations that have a depth-of-embedment-to-width ratio of approximately less than
Shallow foundations are those founded near to the finished ground surface; generally
where the founding depth (Df) is less than the width of the footing and less than 3m. These are
not strict rules, but merely guidelines: basically, if surface loading or other surface conditions
will affect the bearing capacity of a foundation it is 'shallow'. Shallow foundations (sometimes
called 'spread footings') include pads ('isolated footings'), strip footings and rafts.
Shallows foundations are used when surface soils are sufficiently strong and stiff to support the
imposed loads; they are generally unsuitable in weak or highly compressible soils, such as
poorly-compacted fill, peat, recent lacustrine and alluvial deposits, etc.

Advantage of using shallow foundation


Cost is affordable.
Construction procedure is simple.
Materials is mostly concrete.
Labour does not need expertise.

Disadvantages of using shallow foundation


Limit capacity soil structure.
Irregular ground surface for example slope and retaining wall.
Foundation subjected to pullout, torsion and moment.

Footing Foundations

A footing is that part of a structure which serves to transmit the weight of the structure to
the natural subsoil. A footing that supports a single column is an isolated footing or a spread
footing, one that support a group of columns is a combined footing and one that support a wall is
a continuous or strip footing. The depth of footing, Df, is the vertical distance between the base
of the footing and the ground surface. If Df is less width of the footing it is called a shallow
footing. The behaviour of shallow continuous footings will be presented first.


Combination, or combined, footings are similar to isolated spread footings except that they
support two or more columns and are rectangular or trapezoidal in shape (Figure 2-5). They are
primarily used when the column spacing is non-uniform (Bowles, 1996) or when isolated spread
footings become so closely spaced that a combination footing is simpler to form and construct. In
the case of bridge abutments, an example of a combination footing is the so-called spillthrough type abutment (Figure 2-6). This configuration was used during some of the initial
construction of the Interstate freeways on new alignments where spread footings could be
founded on competent native soils. Spill-through abutments are also used at stream crossings to
make sure foundations are below the scour level of the stream.
Due to the frame action that develops with combination footings, they can be used to resist large
overturning or rotational moments in the longitudinal direction of the column row.
There are a number of approaches for designing and constructing combined footings. The choice
depends on the available space, load distribution among the columns supported by the footing,
variations of soil properties supporting the footing and economics.

Types of Combined Footing:


Rectangular Combined Footing


Trapezoidal Combined Footing


Cantilever Footing


Mat Foundation ( raft foundation )

Ultimate Bearing Capacity

Terzaghi (1943 ) first published an approximate method of computing ultimate bearing

capacity of soils. He made the following assumptions in his analysis.


The base of the footing is rough. This assumption is fully justified in practice.
The soil around the footing, above its base can be replaced by equivalent surcharge.
The footing is shallow. Terzaghi assumed that a footing is shallow if Df < B. If Df > B


the error because of neglecting shear resistance along AA' and BB' becomes appreciable.
The footing is continuous. This simplifies the analysis because the problem becomes two
dimensional. For isolated and spread footings a correction factor based on experience has
been recommended by Terzaghi.

Criteria of Satisfactory Action of a Footing

A footing must satisfy two general requirements which are as follow:

The soil supporting the footing must be safe against shear failure. An adequate factor of


safety is provided while assigning allowable loads to a footing.

The footing must not settle more than a specified amount.

The usual procedure of design of a footing consists of the following :


Select a suitable width and depth for the footing.

Determine the allowable soil pressure for maximum settlement of the footing.
Determine the ultimate bearing capacity of the soil.
Determine allowable soil pressure by applying a suitable factor of safety to ultimate
bearing capacity.

Test Cube
Design of Footings
Load Maximum (Newton)
Compression strength = ----------------------------------Brick width surface (PxL)


Depth of Footing
The depth to which foundations should be carried depends upon the following factors :

The securing of adequate bearing capacity.

In the case of clayey soils, depth of zone in which the shrinkage and swelling due to


seasonal weather changes are likely to cause appreciable movement.

In fine sands and silts, depth of zone up to which frost trouble may be encountered.
The depth up to which excavations are likely in future in close proximity.
Indian Standard Code of Practice, provides for a minimum depth 50 cms below the

natural ground.
Subject to the requirement of the code, the footing is ordinarily located at the highest
point, where adequate bearing capacity is obtained. In some instances if an especially firm
layer is available at a greater depth, it may be more economical to establish the footing at a
lower elevation because the area required for the footing would be smaller.

a. Also known as a footer or footing


Its an enlargement at the bottom of a column/

c. bearing wall that spreads the applied structural loads over a sufficiently large soil


Each column & each bearing wall has its own spread footing, so each structure may
include dozens of individual footings.



The foundation consists of concrete slabs located under each structural column and a
continuous slab under load-bearing walls.
For the spread foundation system the structural load is literally spread out over a broad
area under the building


Most common type of foundation used due to their low cost & ease of construction.


Most often used in small to medium size structure with moderate to good soil condition


Spread footings may be built in different shapes & sizes to accommodate individual
needs such as the following:

a) Square Spread Footings / Square Footings

b) Rectangular Spread Footings
c) Circular Spread Footings
d) Continuous Spread Footings
e) Combined Footings
f) Ring Spread Footings

a) Square Spread Footings / Pad Foundation

- support a single centrally located column
- use concrete mix 1:2:4 and reinforcement
- the reinforcement in both axes are to
resist/carry tension loads.


b) Rectangular Spread Footings

- Useful when obstructions prevent
construction of a square footing with a
sufficiently large base area and when
large moment loads are present

c) Circular Spread Footings

- are round in plan view
- most frequently used as foundation for
light standards, flagpoles and power

transmission lines.

d)Continuous Spread Footings / Strip Foundation

- Used to support bearing walls

e) Combined Footings
- support more than one column
- useful when columns are located too close
together for each to have its own footing
f) Ring Spread Footings
- continuous footings that have been wrapped into a
- commonly used to support the walls above-ground
circular storage tanks.
- The contents of these tanks are spread evenly
across the total base area and this weight is probably
greater that the tank itself
- Therefore the geotechnical analyses of tanks usually
treat them as circular foundations with diameters
equal to the diameter of the tank.

Factors of Safety
For safety against bearing capacity failure a factor of safety of 3 is recommended under
the probable maximum loads. For structures of minor importance and in subsoils of uniform
character whose properties are very well known, a smaller factor of safety may be used. A factor
of safety of three is comparable with the value commonly used for the design of superstructure.
According to Indian Standard Code of Practice referred to previously, for most of the
ordinary concrete structures, such as office buildings, flats and factories, differential settlement
may be permissible such that the angular distortion of the frame of the buildings does not exceed
1/250 normally and 1/1000 where it is particularly desired to avoid any kind of damage. Table
below show the limiting total settlement of isolated footings, as recommended in the I.S code.
Non Cohesive
Table 1 Premissible Settlements of Isolated Footings

Total Settlement
4.0 cm
6.5 cm

Gross and net load

The total load on the footing including its own weight is gross load, and the unit load is
the grass intensity of loading. If however, the weight of the soil excavated for constructing the
footing is deducted from the gross loads, it is called the net load and the unit load is then the net
intensity of loading.
Net ultimate bearing capacity

It has been defined as pressure at the base of footing in excess of that at the same level
due to surrounding surcharge. The use of net bearing capacity is sometimes more convenient in

Thus qa ( net ) = qa yDf

=cNc + yBNy + yDf (Nq-1)
According to Terzaghis equation.


Types of Foundation Settlement

The settlement of a foundation consists of two parts. They are

Elastic settlement ( Se )
Consolidation settlement ( Sc )
Elastic settlement is caused by the elastic deformation of dry soil and of moist and saturated

soils without any change in moisture content. Consolidation divide into two group namely
primary consolidation and secondary consolidation. Primary consolidation is the result of a
volume change in saturated cohesive soils because of the expulsion of water that occupies the
void spaces. Secondary consolidation settlement is observed in saturated cohesive soils and is the
result of the plastic adjustment of soil fabrics. It follows the primary consolidation settlement
under constant effective stress.

Figure 1.1 Elastic settlement profile.

Raft Foundation
A foundation system in which essentially the entire building is placed on a large
continuous footing.
It is a flat concrete slab, heavily reinforced with steel, which carries the downward loads
of the individual columns or walls.
Raft foundations are used to spread the load from a structure over a large area, normally
the entire area of the structure.


It is normally consists of a concrete slab

which extends over the entire loaded area.

It may be stiffened by ribs or beams

incorporated into the foundation.

Raft foundations have the advantage of reducing differential settlements as the concrete
slab resists differential movements between loading positions.

They are often needed on soft or loose soils with low bearing capacity as they can spread
the loads over a larger area.

Raft foundations are used to spread the load from a structure over a large area, normally the
entire area of the structure. They are used when column loads or other structural loads are close
together and individual pad foundations would interact.
A raft foundation normally consists of a concrete slab which extends over the entire loaded
area. It may be stiffened by ribs or beams incorporated into the foundation.
Raft foundations have the advantage of reducing differential settlements as the concrete slab
resists differential movements between loading positions. They are often needed on soft or loose
soils with low bearing capacity as they can spread the loads over a larger area.

Raft foundation are shallow foundation, is a combined footing that may cover
the entire area under a structure supporting several columns and walls. Raft
foundation are sometimes preferred for soils that have low load-bearing capacities
but that will have to support high column and wall loads. Under some conditions,
spread footings would have to cover more than half the building area, and raft
foundations might be more economical. Raft foundations are used to distribute heavy

column and wall loads across the entire building area, to lower the contact pressure compared to
conventional spread footings.

Raft foundations can be constructed near the ground surface, or at the bottom of
basements. In high-rise buildings, raft-slab foundations can be several meters thick, with
extensive reinforcing to ensure relatively uniform load transfer.This type of foundation is
often used on poor soils of lightly loaded buildings and is capable of accommodating
small settlement of soil. In poor soil the upper crust of soil (450-600mm)is often
stiffer than the lower subsoil and to build a light raft on this crust is usually better
then penetrating it with a strip foundation. If the building loads or the allowable soil
pressure low and the area of isolated footings exceeds about one half the area of
the building it may be economical to provide a raft foundation. If the centre of
gravity of the loads coincides with the centre of the raft, the distribution below the
raft is usually assumed to be uniform. It has been shown that the pressure
distribution below the base of a raft is generally not uniform. This may result in
increased moments than those computed on the assumption of uniform pressure

If a raft foundation is located at such a depth that the unit load of the superstructure and
the raft equals the weight of the soil removed, ( yDf ), it is called floating foundation. In this case
there is no increase in the pressure intensity on the soil under the raft, and there is no problem of
stability. Settlements are restricted to the extent of any swelling which might have taken place
after excavation. The floating foundation is useful in every weak soil. Several types of raft
foundations are currently used. Some of the common types are the following :

Flat plate. The raft foundations is uniform thickness.


Flat plate thickened under column.


Beams and slab. The beams run both ways, and the columns are located at the
intersection of the beams.


Flat plates with pedestals.


Slab with basement walls as a part of the raft foundations. The walls act as stiffeners for
the raft foundations.

Raft foundations may be supported by piles. The piles help in reducing the
settlement of a structure built over highly compressible soil. Where the water table
is high, raft foundations are often placed over piles to control buoyancy.

Chapter 2

Deep Foundation


Extend several dozen feet below the building

a) Piles
b) Piers
c) Caissons
d) Compensated Foundation

Deep foundations are those founding too deeply below the finished ground surface for
their base bearing capacity to be affected by surface conditions, this is usually at depths >3 m
below finished ground level. They include piles, piers and caissons or compensated foundations
using deep basements and also deep pad or strip foundations. Deep foundations can be used to
transfer the loading to a deeper, more competent strata at depth if unsuitable soils are present
near the surface.
Those which transfer the loads to a subsoil some distance below the ground floor of the
building such as piles. A deep foundation is a type of foundation distinguished from shallow
foundations by the depth they are embedded into the ground. They are either end-bearing if they
extend all of the way to rock or hard soil, or they are friction piles if they are mainly supported
by friction along the sides, although friction piles also usually develop some end support. Timber
piles are driven top down to take advantage of their taper for increasing friction, and a taper often

is incorporated of their taper for increasing friction, and a taper often is incorporated into
concrete piles. Compaction piles are driven into loose san to densify it and increase its bearing
capacity. Modern piles are wood,steel,concrete, or composite if they are composed of more than
one material. An example of a composite pile is when a wood pile section is used under a
groundwater table where it is preserved by reducing condition, and is connected to a concrete
section that extends through aerobic surroundings above the water table.There are many reasons
a geotechnical engineer would recommend a deep foundation over a shallow foundation, but
some of the common reasons are very large design loads, a poor soil at shallow depth, or site
constraints (like property lines). There are different terms used to describe different types of deep
foundations including the pile (which is analogous to a pole), the pier (which is analogous to a
column), drilled shafts, and caissons. Piles are generally driven into the ground in situ; other
deep foundations are typically put in place using excavation and drilling. Whereas piles are
driven or can be jacked into the ground, piers are large-diameter supports that are placed in prebored holes. Caissons are large tubes used for construction below water, as in rivers, and may be
pressurized to keep water out. Caisson foundation sometimes is applied to bored piers, and piers
also are sometimes called shafts or piles, leading to some deep confusion.
The naming conventions may vary between engineering disciplines and firms. Deep
foundations can be made out of timber, steel, reinforced concrete and prestressed concrete. These
foundation is according to BS 8004 : 1986 which mean more than 3 meter.
However, the use of deep foundations may permit much higher loadings, reduce settlements,
give greater certainty of support and allow the use of additional facilities. For example,
underground car parks, thus increasing the value of the development.

Figure 2.1 Deep,intermediate, and shallow foundations.

Types of deep foundation
Deep foundations may be classified as follows.
Deep pad or strip footings.
Basements or hollow boxes (compensated foundations).
Caissons. These may be open well caissons or pneumatic caissons.
iv. Cylinders and piers. These may be excavated in the dry by hand, by mechanical means or,
in the wet by mechanical means including boring and slurry wall techniques.
v. Piles.
Peripheral walls. Concrete walls constructed in a slurry-filled trench or as contiguous
bored piles, as well as being used as basement or retaining walls, may also carry vertical
loads in conjunction with their retaining functions.
Mixed foundations. These may be a combination of any of a) to f).
Ground improvement or replacement. Where the ground does not have adequate bearing
characteristics and stability, consideration may be given to general or local improvement
of the bearing characteristics or to replacement of the ground in depth. It may then be
possible to use a shallow foundation or a cheaper type of deep foundation.

Cylinders and piers


Its a vertical bridge support.

Its a foundation for carrying a heavy structural load which is constructed in site in a
deep excavation.

Piers are foundations for carrying a heavy structural load which is constructed insitu in a
deep excavation.
Cylinders are essentially small open well caissons comprising single cells which are of
circular cross section. (The term pier is sometimes used for similar foundations of circular or
other shaped cross section.) The distinction between cylinders and caissons is one of size and is
necessarily arbitrary. Because of their smaller size, cylinders lend themselves more readily to the
use of precast elements in their construction. For example, complete precast rings may be added
at the top as the cylinder is being sunk.
Cylinders are sometimes constructed by the method in which the ground beneath the
lower edge of the cylinder so far constructed is removed and a further ring lowered in sections is
installed below it, and so on. This method is likely to be employed only in appropriate ground
conditions in the dry, or where pumping, grouting or freezing is practicable. Another method is to
excavate to a small depth with an unsupported face, then to place formwork, behind which
concrete is placed to support the soil. Below the water table, methods of sinking cylinders are
usually similar to those used for open well caissons. Sinking cylinders (or large bored piles) by
mechanical drilling or grabbing methods has largely superseded hand methods of excavation.
Cylinders are often filled with concrete and are sometimes reinforced.

Compensated foundations
Compensated foundations are deep foundations in which the relief of stress due to excavation is
approximately balanced by the applied stress due to the foundation. The net stress applied is
therefore very small. A compensated foundation normally comprises a deep basement.
Peripheral walls

With such walls, formed by excavating under a slurry, care is necessary to ensure that
slurry is not trapped between the concrete and the base of the excavation. Diaphragm walls are
relatively slender structural members and they should be capable of withstanding earth pressure
and hydrostatic pressure at each stage in the sequence of excavation and support by anchorages
and by temporary and permanent shoring.
At the final stages of excavation of a substructure with peripheral diaphragm walls, the
walls are restrained from inward movement by the passive resistance of the soil below the base
of the excavation until such time as the floor slab of the substructure is placed. The depth of
penetration of the peripheral walls should be adequate to mobilize the required passive resistance
of the soil and also to prevent erosion by seepage of water beneath the toe of the wall into the
excavation. Where inclined ground anchors are used to provide support against external
pressures, the thickness of the wall at the toe should be sufficient to prevent excessive settlement
due to forces induced by the vertical component of the anchor stress.
The thickness of the wall at the toe should also be sufficient to prevent excessive
settlement resulting from vertical loading applied to the crest or intermediate levels in a wall
from floors or columns. Diaphragm wall techniques are used to form load bearing foundation
structures (sometimes referred to as barrettes) which may be of rectangular, cruciform, hollow
box or other plan shapes (Corbett et al. 1974).
Mixed foundations on non-uniform sites
When site investigation indicates that ground conditions are not uniform, it is important
to provide the type and size of foundations appropriate to the ground conditions existing on the
site, and it should be recognized that the extent of ground variation is not always fully revealed
in a site investigation. On any site further information about ground conditions becomes
available during construction, and on a non-uniform site information can often make changes in
foundations necessary. A typical example is a change in level of the ground-bearing stratum,
revealed during foundation construction, leading to revised reinforcement requirements and
problems in coping with groundwater, with consequent delays on site. A form of construction
which can easily be varied to suit the local ground conditions has advantages in such a case.
Conversely, if the choice of foundations is of a kind that cannot be easily modified to suit
variation in ground conditions, then a more sensitive site investigation would be appropriate.
A knowledge of previous site history and site geology are helpful in providing a sense of
the extent of variation of ground conditions that may be expected. When ground conditions are
not uniform, the use of more than one type of foundation could result in greater economy. For
example, if an old buried river channel crosses a site where a satisfactory bearing stratum exists
elsewhere near ground level, it may be economical to use shallow foundations combined with
piles in the deeper part. When using mixed foundations, special attention will need to be paid to
the effect on the structure, particularly where differential settlements can occur. If the foundation
and the supporting ground are looked at as one entity, as they should be, it will be seen that any
foundation may behave in a complex way. In particular, differential settlements may occur for a

variety of reasons. However, there is generally some uncertainty as to what extent a calculated
settlement relates to the actual settlement which will occur, and this uncertainty may lead to the
decision to articulate or separate the superstructure into sections. Articulation of a superstructure,
however, may easily prove ineffective if the forces required to initiate joint movement are
excessive so that the building may be damaged without movement or damage in the joint areas.
Since the cross-sectional area of a joint filler may be considerable, the force required to compress
a joint filler by, for example, 50 % could amount to several tonnes and there may thus be less
resistance to damaging the structure elsewhere rather than compressing the filler.

Pile foundation

A slender, structural member consisting steel or concrete or timber.

It is installed in the ground to transfer the structural loads to soils at some significant
depth below the base of the structure.

They include large bored piles which normally differ in scale but not in principle from bored
piles of conventional size.

The piles may be divided into the following categories depending upon their use :

Bearing piles is a pile when a pile passes through a poor material and its either rests on
hard stratum like rock or penetrates a small distance into a stratum of good bearing


capacity, it is called a bearing pile.

Friction piles is a pile when the piles are driven through a soft soil and develop their
carrying capacity by friction on the sides of the piles, they are called friction piles.

Piles are relatively long, slender members that transmit foundation loads through soil strata
of low bearing capacity to deeper soil or rock strata having a high bearing capacity. They are
used when for economic, constructional or soil condition considerations it is desirable to transmit
loads to strata beyond the practical reach of shallow foundations. In addition to supporting
structures, piles are also used to anchor structures against uplift forces and to assist structures in
resisting lateral and overturning forces.
Piles are structural members that are made of steel,concrete, or timber. They are used to build
pile foundations, which are deep and which cost more than shallow foundations. Despite the
cost, the use of piles often is necessary to ensure structural safety. A pile can be loosely defined
as a column inserted in the ground to transmit the structural loads to a lower subsoil. Piles have
been used in contact two hundred years ago and until the twentieth century were invariably of
driven timber. The following list identifies some of the conditions that require pile foundations
( Vesic, 1977 )

When one or more upper soil layers are highly compressible and to weak to support the
load transmitted by the superstructure, piles are used to transmit the load to underlying
bedrock or a stronger soil layer. When bedrock is not encountered at a reasonable depth
below the ground surface, piles are used to transmit the structural load to the soil
gradually. The resistance to the applied structural load is derieved mainly from the
frictional resistance developed at the soil-pile interface.


When subjected to horizontal forces, pile foundations resist by bending, while still
supporting the vertical load transmitted by the superstructure. This type of situation is
generally encountered in the design and construction of earth-retaining structures and
foundations of tall structures that are subjected to high wind or to earthquake forces.


In many cases, expansive and collapsible soils may be present at the site of a proposed
structure. These soils may extend to a great depth below the ground surface. Expansive
soils swell and shrink as their moisture content increases and decreases, and the pressure
of the swelling can be considerable. If shallow foundations are used in such
circumstances, the structure may suffer considerable damage. However, pile foundations
may be considered as an alternative when piles are extended beyond the active zone,

which is where swelling and shrinking occur. Soils such as losess are collapsible in
nature. When the moisture content of these soils increases, their structures may break
down. A sudden decrease in the void ratio of soil induces large settlement of structures
supported by shallow foundation. In such cases, pile foundations may be used in which
the piles are extended into stable soil layers beyond the zone where moisture will change.

The foundation of some structures, such as transmission towers, offshore platforms, and
basement mats below the water table, are subjected to uplifting forces. Piles are
sometimes used for these foundations to resist the uplifting force.


Bridge abutments and piers are usually constructed over pile foundations to avoid the loss
of bearing capacity that a shallow foundation might suffer because of soil erosion at the
ground surface.

Although numerous investigations, both theoretical and experimental, have been conducted
in the past to predict the behavior and the load-bearing capacity of piles in granular and
cohesive soils, the mechanisms are not yet entirely understood and may never be. The design
and analysis of pile foundations may thus be considered somewhat of an art as a result of the
uncertainties involved in working with some subsoil conditions.
The main function of bearing piles is to transfer the load to lower levels of the ground which
are capable of sustaining the load with an adequate factor of safety and without settling at the
working load by an amount detrimental to the structure that they support. Piles derive their
carrying capacity from a combination of friction along their sides and end bearing at the pile
point or base. The former is likely to predominate for piles in clays and silts and where long
sockets are formed in soft rocks. The latter applies to piles terminating in a stratum such as
compact gravel, hard clay or rock. When friction piles are installed in a deep deposit of fairly
uniform consistency in order to transfer the foundation pressure to the lower levels, they should
be long enough to ensure a substantial advantage over a shallow foundation. In these
circumstances it should be borne in mind that for the same superficial area of pile surface, a few
long piles forming a piled foundation are more effective and will support the load with smaller
settlements than many short piles.
Piles should be installed to the prescribed depth, resistance or set per blow without
damage to the pile shafts or the bearing stratum and records of the installation process should be
maintained. The piles should be able to carry their design loads without exceeding the
permissible working stresses in the material of the pile, but the stresses during driving may
exceed these. The stresses during pitching and handling should be within the safe bending
stresses prescribed in the design. The load should be applied concentrically with the axis of the
pile or the centre of gravity of the pile group. Allowance should be made in the design for
inaccuracies in positioning the piles, particularly for isolated single piles or pairs of piles. Where

permanent eccentric loads have to be carried, due allowance should be made in the design. In
certain situations vertical piles may be subjected to horizontal or eccentric loads. If the ground is
unable to resist the resultant forces without excessive lateral movement, additional resistance
should be provided. This can be achieved by increasing the number of vertical piles or increasing
their stiffness, by the use of raking piles or ground beams or by replacing the upper soil layer
with soil more capable of resisting horizontal forces. Special consideration should be given to
effects such as ground heave due to frost or the behaviour of expansive clays, temperature
variations in the ground and alterations in groundwater level, in case they are detrimental to the
bearing capacity or effectiveness of the piles. Temperature changes may also affect the horizontal
dimensions of the superstructure, thereby distorting the piles and causing additional stresses.

Figure 2.2: Piling

Classification of Piles

Piles may be classified by the way in which they transmit their loads to the subsoil or by the
way they are formed. Piles may transmit their loads to a lower level by:
a) End Bearing
The shafts of the piles act as column carrying the loads through the overlaying weak
subsoil to firm strata into which pile toe has penetrated. This can be a rock strata or a layer of
the firm sand or gravel which has been compacted by the displacement and vibration
encountered during the drive.

Figure 2.2: Friction Pile

b) Friction
Any type of foundation imposes on the ground a pressure which spreads out to form a
bulb of pressure. If a suitable load bearing strata cannot be found at an acceptable level,
particularly in stiff clay soils, it is possible to use a pile to carry this bulb of pressure to a
lower level where a higher bearing capacity is found. The friction of floating pile is mainly
supported by the adhesion or the friction action of the soil around the perimeter of the pile

Figure 2.3: End Bearing Pile

Types of bearing piles
The classification of bearing piles is related to the effect on the soil. There are two main
types: displacement piles and replacement piles.
a) Diplacement Piles
A displacement pile is either driven, jacket , vibrated or screwed into the ground. This
section displaces the soil outwards and downwards but the material is not actually removed.
There are two types of displacement pile: large displacement piles which includes all solid driven
piles and small displacement pile, in which very little soil is displaced. This would include the
screwed piles and H piles.

b) Replacement Piles

Replacement piles may be classified as Supported or Unsupported.In both cases a hole is

formed in the ground by some form of cutting or boring tool and is then filled with reinforced
concrete. The unsupported hole will normally require a short tube at the top to prevent debris
from falling into the concrete during placing. Support to holes may be provided by means of
medium or heavy sectional casing, sscrewed together as boring proceeds,or by means by a head
of drilling mud (usually bentonite suspension).
Types Of Pile
Driven Piles
a) Timber piles
Timber piles are tree trunks that have had their branches and bark carefully trimmed off. The
maximum length of most timber piles is 30 ft to 65ft. to qualify for use as a pile, the timber
should be straight, sound, and without any defects. Timber piles are usually square sawn
hardwood or softwood in lengths up to 12.000m in sections,with sizes ranging from 225 x 225
mm to 600mm x 600 mm .Most timber piles are fitted with an iron or steel driving shoe and have
an iron ring around the head to prevent splitting due to driving. Although not particularly
common they are used in sea defences such as groynes and sometimes as guide piles for large in
conjunction with steel sheet piling. The American Society of Civil Engineers Manual of
Practice, No. 17 ( 1959 ) divided timber piles into three classes :

Class A piles carry heavy loads. The minimum diameter of the butt should be 14 in.


Class B piles are used to carry medium loads. The minimum butt diameter should be
12 to 13 in.


Class C piles are used in temporary construction work. They can be used
permanently for structures when the entire pile is below the water table. The
minimum butt diameter should be 12 in.

In any case, a pile tip should not have a diameter less tan 6 in. Timber piles cannot withstand
hard driving stress; therefore, the pile capacity is generally limited. Steel shoes may be used to
avoid damage at the pile tip ( bottom ). The tops of timber pile may also be damaged during the
driving operation. The crushing of the wooden fibers caused by the impact of the hammer is
referred to as brooming. To avoid damage to the top of the pile, a metal band or a cap may be

used. The usual length of wooden piles is 15 ft to 50 ft. The maximum length is about 100 ft to
130 ft. The usual load carried by wooden piles is 65 kip to 115 kip.

Load bearing capacities can be up to 350 kn per pile depending upon section size and or
species.There are two types of timber piles: Natural logs named as Bakau Piles, and treated
timber piles which are chemically treated against the decay.
b) Bakau Piles
The bakau pile is generally tapered and has a diameter of 75 to 125mm.. The piles are
generally used as friction piles at poor ground condition which have a high ground water
table.The bakau piles are generally used for light buildings (column load of approximately 30
tonnes).Suitable in soft clay areas.
c) Treated Timber Pile

The piles are made from kempas, a kind of broadleaf tree. The cross sectional area of the
pile is 5 inches by 5 inches and six inches by 6 inches,and the pile is 20 to 24 feet long. The
permissible degree of bow or wrap of the pile within 20 feet long is 1 inches from a straight
axis through the pile. The permissible degree of wrap of a pile more than 20 feet long is 2 inches.
Design working ads of 5 inches by 5 inches piles an d6 inches by 6 inches piles are the 15
ton/pile and the 20 tonnes respectively.
d) Composite Piles
The upper and lower portions of composite piles are made of different materials. For
example, composite piles may be made of steel and concrete or timber and concrete steel-andconcrete piles consist of a lower portion of steel and upper portion of cast-in-place concrete. This
type of pile is used when the length of the pile required for adequate bearing exceeds the
capacity of simple cast-in-place concrete piles. Timber-and-concrete piles usually consist of a
lower portion of timber pile below the permanent water table and an upper portion of concrete.
In any case, forming proper joints between two dissimilar materials is difficult, and for that
reason, composite piles are not widely used.It is composite wood and concrete pile. The timber is
kept below groundwater and a greater over-all length is achieved. A closed-end pipe pile may be
used in place of the timber section. Combination of two or more of a preceding type or
combination of different materials in the same type of pile. Composite piles are used in ground
conditions where conventional piles are unsuitable or uneconomical concrete and timber are the
type used because it is cheap and easy to handle of the timber piles with the durability concrete.
The timber is terminated below ground water level and the an upper portion formed in concrete.
e) Steel Piles
Steel piles, like timber, are driven by percussion means and have a variety of suitable crosssections. In addition to the common sheet piles, the three main types are H sections, Box piles
and tube piles. The main use of steel piles is for temporary works, retaining walls and marine
structures. The problem of corrosion of the steel can be overcome by suitable protection. Sheet
piles have the advantages of being robust, light to handle capable of carrying high compressive

loads when driven on to a hard stratum, and capable of being driven hard to a deep penetration to
reach a bearing stratum or to develope a high skin frictional resistance, although their cost per
metre run is high compared with precast concrete piles.
f) Concrete Piles
Concrete piles may be divided into two basis categories to precast piles and cast-in-situ piles.
Precast piles can be prepared by using ordinary reinforcement, and they can be square or
octagonal in cross section. Reinforcement is provided to enable the pile to resist the bending
moment developed during pickup and transportation, the vertical load, and the bending moment
caused by a lateral load. The piles are cast to desired lengths and cured before being transported
to the work sites.
Some general facts about concrete piles are as follow :

Usual length : 30 ft to 50 ft


Usual load : 65 kip to 675 kip


Advantages :
a) Can be subjected to hard driving
b) Corrosion resistant
c) Can be easily combined with a concrete superstructure


Disadvantages :

a) Difficult to achieve proper cutoff

b) Difficult to transport
Precast piles can also be prestressed by the use of high-strength steel prestressing cables. The
ultimate strength of these cables is about 260ksi. During casting of the piles, the cable are
pretensioned to about 130 to 190 ksi, and concrete is poured around them. After curing, the
cables are cut, producing a compressive force on the pile section. Precast concrete piles used on
medium to large contracts where soft soils overlaying a firm strata are uncountered and at least
100 piles will be required. The precast concrete driven pile has a little frictional bearing strength
since the driving operation moulds the cohesive soils around the shaft which reduces the positive
frictional resistance. Some general facts about precast prestressed piles are as follow :


Usual length : 30 ft to 150 ft


Maximum length : 200 ft


Maximum load : 1700 kip to 1900 kip

The advantages and disadvantages are the same as those of precast piles. Cast-in-situ,or castin-place piles are built by making a hole in the ground and then filling it with concrete. Various
types of cast-in-place concrete piles are currently used in construction, and most of them have
been patented by their manufacturers. These piles may be divided into two broad categories
cased and uncased. Both types may have a pedestal at the bottom. Cased piles are made by
driving a steel casing into the ground with the help of a mandrel placed inside the casting. When
the pile reaches the proper depth the mandrel is withdrawn and the casting is filled with concrete.
The pedestal is an expanded concrete bulb that is formed by dropping a hammer on fresh
concrete. Some general facts about cased cast-in-place piles are as follow :

Usual length : 15 ft to 50 ft


Maximum length : 100 ft to 130 ft


Usual load : 45 kip to 115 kip


Approximate maximum load : 180 kip


Advantages :
a) Relatively cheap
b) Allow for inspection before pouring concrete
c) Easy to extend


Disadvantages :
a) Difficult to splice after concreting
b) Thin casings may be damaged during driving

Driven Cast-In-Place Pile


Driven cast-in-place pile installed by driving,to the desired penetration,a close ended steel
tube or concrete shell and the void created is filled with concrete. Steel tube or concrete shell
can be withdrawn or left in place.


Readily adjustable in length to suit the desired depth of penetration.


Economic if no casing required.

Bored Cast-In-Place Pile


A borehole is formed in the ground by sugar etc and the void concrete to form bored pile.


Usual sizes varies from 400mm diameter to 1000mm diameter.


Allowable load varies from 800kN to 1500kN.


Length of bored piles easily adjustable to suit the penetration depth.


Suitable in redidual soil


Uses high slump self compacting concrete.


Trem concreting if water in borehole.

The uncased piles are made by first driving the casing to the desired depth and then filling it
with fresh concrete. The casing is then gradually withdrawn. Following are some general facts
about uncased cast-in-place concrete piles :

Usual length : 15 ft to 50 ft


Maximum length : 100 ft to 130 ft


Usual load : 67 kip to 115 kip


Approximate maximum load : 160 kip


Advantages :
a) Initially economical
b) Can be finished at any elevation


Disadvantages :
a) Voids may be created if concrete is placed rapidly
b) Difficult to splice after concreting
c) In soft soils, the sides of the hole may cave in, squeezing the concrete

g) Steel H- Section Piles

H section piles are in the form of wide- flanged steel section and rolled in accordance with
standard. The displacement piles, and the H section piles may be driven by any type of hammer,
but the head of the pile should be protected by a helmet.

Code of practice for Foundations (Formerly CP 2004) BS 8004 : 1986 Foundations.pdf
Module C2001 Engineering Construction and Material 2
Soil mechanics and foundation engineering by Bharat Singh and Shamsher Prakash
Introduction to Geotechnical Engineering by Braja M. Das
Geotechnical Engineering Soil And foundation Principles And Practice by Richard L. Handy and
M. G. Spangler
Kejuruteraan Asas By Bujang B.K Huat, Shukri Maail and Azlan A.Aziz