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Broms method for analysis of single piles under lateral loading

The method was presented in three papers published in 1964 and 1965 (Broms 1964a,
I964b, 1965). As shown in the following paragraphs, a pile can be designed to sustain a
lateral load by solving some simple equations or by referring to charts and graphs.


A.l.l Ultimate latera/load for piles in cohesive soil
Broms adopted a distribution of soil resistance, as shown in Figure A.l, that allows the
ultimate lateral load to be computed by equations of static equilibrium. The elimination of
soil resistance for the top 1.5 diameters of the pile is a result of lower resistance in that
zone because a wedge of soil can move up and out when the pile is deflected. The selec-
tion of nine times the undrained shear strength times the pile diameter as the ultimate soil
resistance, regardless of depth, is based on calculations with movement of soil from the
front toward the back of the pile.

A.l.l. 1 Short, free-head piles in cohesive soil
For short piles that are unrestrained against rotation, the patterns that were selected for
behavior are shown in Figure A.2. The following equation results from the integration of
the upper part of the shear diagram to the point of zero shear (the point of maximum mo-

M;:: = ~(e+ 1.5b +f)- 9cubf2 (A. I)

But the point where shear is zero is



M;:::~ =~(e+l.5b+0.5f) (A.3)

Integration of the lower portion of the shear diagram yields


unrestrained against rotation.44 m._ I t"'--"'1 Mmax Figure A._j. fp = 1.5 may be solved for the load Ptult that will produce a soil failure.l. and moment for short pile in cohesive soil. II . r---:1 I I I I II II L I I I I II I I I _.2. soil resistance. Diagrams of deflection. As an example of the use ofthe equations. e .5b + f + g) (A.2 through A. Assumed distribution of soil resistance for cohe- sive soil.D.75 x 1o-4 m4.4) It may be seen that L = (1. L = 2.5) Equations A. An appropriate factor of safety should be employed.5b Figure A. steel pipe by 19 mm wall). After obtaining a value of Ptul~ the maximum moment can be computed and compared with the moment capacity of the pile. assume the following: b = 305 mm (assume 305-mm O. (A._ /. e = 0. shear. and .61 m.370 Piles under latera/loading 1.

9)(0. Broms method for analysis ofsingle piles under latera/loading 371 Cu = 47. A. free-head piles in cohesive soil As the pile in cohesive soil with the unrestrained head becomes longer.l. A.67.083P. P. failure will occur with the formation of a plastic hinge at a depth of l. Equations A.53 P/Uit ) Ptult = 224 kN Broms presented a set of curves for solving the problem of the long pile (see Fig. Substituting into Equation A. A. Assuming no axial load.3 430 = Prult (o.4575 + 2. ' The computed maximum stress is tolerable for a steel pipe.2 Long.4) ] max (9)(4 7 . especially when a factor of safety is applied to Ptult· The computations.6I + 0.305) + (0.4. )( . then.S are solved simultaneously and the following quadratic equa- tion is obtained.900 = 0 Substituting into Equation A. .4[0. the yield moment is 430 m-kN if the yield strength of the steel is selected as 276 MPa.4). the maximum stress is + = (77 )(0. show that the short pile would fail due to a soil failure. 3 Entering the curves with a value of MJcub of316..' + 1.305) =77 kN-m. one obtains a value of Pult of60 kN. For the pile that is used in the example.5(0.2 through A.61 + 1. which agrees with the results computed above.50b + j Equation A.3 yields the maximum moment 5 59 M = 59.l. one obtains a value of Pru11 of about 220 kN.3).9 kPa.l 5254 ) = 67 000 kPa Jb l. A plastic hinge will develop when the yield stress of the steel is attained over the en- tire cross-section. Broms presented a convenient set of curves for solving the problem of the short-pile (see Fig. The shape of the pile under load will be different than that shown in Figure A.2 but the equations of me- chanics for the upper portion of the pile remain unchanged. Entering the curves with Ub of 8 and e/b of 2.3 can then be used directly to solve for the ultimate lateral load that can be applied.75xl0.

4.n 50 10 8 12 Embedment Length. Lib Figure A.-----. 40 60 100 200 400 600 Yield Moment.-----.-----. Curves for design oflong piles under lateral load in cohesive soil. My'c.------. · b3 Figure A.------. ..3. Curves for design of short piles under lateral load in cohesive soil.372 Piles under latera/loading 60.

8m the value of PtuJt re- mains constant at 224 kN.l.5 to solve for a critical length.5 presents the dia- grams of mechanics for the case of the restrained pile of intermediate length. For the example problem. an intermediate length is reached such that a plastic hinge de- velops at the top of the pile. failure consists of a horizontal movement of the pile through the soil with the full soil resistance developing over the length of the pile except for the top one and one-half pile diameters.l.5b+0.lltare: L = 1.7) Employing the shear diagram for the lower portion of the pile. (A. A simple equation can be written for this mode of failure. The value of L was found to be 5. the mode of failure depends on the length of the pile. where it is expressly eliminated. Rotation at the top of the pile will occur and a point of zero deflection will exist somewhere along the length of the pile.2 through A.5f)-My (A.l. Or a particular solution may start with use of the short- pile equations.5b+ f + g (A.5 Intermediate length. The value of the yield moment may be computed from the pile geometry and mate- rial properties and used with Equations A.4 and solving for g.9) and . (A. if the resulting moment is larger than the yield moment.2 and solving for f and substituting a value of Mmax of 430 m-kN into Equation A. Equation A. fiXed-head piles in cohesive soil For a pile that is fixed against rotation at its top.. Longer piles will fail by yielding. Broms method for analysis ofsingle piles under latera/loading 373 A. fiXed-head piles in cohesive soil As the pile becomes longer. Thus. Figure A.8) The other equations that are needed to solve for PP. for the example problem the value of Ptult increases from zero to 224 kN as the length of the pile increases from 0. For a short pile. M'. The equation for moment equilibrium for the point where the shear is zero (where the positive moment is maximum) is: Substituting a value off. A.l.46m to 5. and above a length of 5.l. based on force equilibrium.4 Short.(l.3 Influence ofpile length.5 can then be solved for L. the long-pile equations may be used. free-head piles in cohesive soil Consideration may need to be given to the pile length at which the pile ceases to be a short pile.8m. the length at which the short-pile equations cease to be valid may be found by substituting a value of Ptult of 224 kN into Equation A.l.6) A.~ = P.8m.

~L-9c"b( L-~. (A.lO) Equations A. A.Sb )-MY= 0 Summing forces in the horizontal direction yield the next equation.5 b I I ' I . 7 becomes My and the following equation results 2MY p =-----'--. (A.l. Diagrams of deflection.b 4.l 0 can be solved for the behavior of the restrained pile of inter- mediate length.1.374 Piles under lateral loading Pt • Ills --J I I 1. A. taking moments about the bottom of the pile yields the following equation. Thus. fzxed-head piles in cohesive soil The mechanics for a long pile that is restrained at its top is similar to that shown in Figure A. Starting with the short pile.6) .bg Figure A.ll) 1 (1.5. Referring to Figure A.5b) = 0 (same as Eq.5b+0.5 except that a plastic hinge develops at the point of the maximum positive moment.5. soil resistance. Prult = 9cub(L -1.l 0 and All can be solved to obtain Ptuft for the long pile. but with the soil resistance only on the right-hand side ofthe pile.' I f I I I I I I I I g I . an equation can be written for moment equilibrium for the case where the yield moment has developed at the top of the pile and where the moment at its bottom is zero.6 Long.7 through A.l.mBX in Equation A. shear. 7 Influence ofpile length. fixed against rotation.l. A.5f) Equations A. fzxed-head piles in cohesive soil The example problem will be solved for the pile lengths where the pile goes from one mode of behavior to another. and moment for intermediate-length pile in cohesive soil. the Mpos.5 c. I I Lo~ "--! ~ 9 c.

as follows from Equation A.305) + 0.305)(L.305) from Equation A. In his presentation. My (A.46 m to 2.6.9)(0. a value of 415 kN was obtained for PtuJi.4 but a note is added to ensure proper use of the curve.27 m and Ptult = 419 kN.. Broms showed a curve in Figure A. In summary.305) + f + g from Equation A.6 m. where .9)(0.l. For the example problem. (2)(430) from EquatiOn A. No curves are presented for the pile of in- termediate length. increases from 28 I kN to 419 kN as the length increases from 2.25)( 47..2 Deflection ofpiles in cohesive soil Broms suggested that for cohesive soils the assumption of a coefficient of subgrade reac- tion that is constant with depth can be used with good results for predicting the lateral de- flection at the groundline..5L+0. PtuJt =--.62 m [ (2.IO can be used with Mmax set equal to My.4575)._'---'--- (1.12 can be solved simultaneously for Ptu11 and for L. as follows: . from Equation A.6.6 and A.3 m.5)(0.8.5)(0. He further suggests that the coefficient of subgrade reaction a should be taken as the average over a depth of0. Broms' curve for the long pile that is fixed against rotation at its top is retained in Figure A.9. then L = 2.0. and above a length of 7.229)..l2.9)(0.6 m to 7. Equations A.l2) tult. Broms methodfor analysis ofsingle piles under latera/loading 375 The simultaneous solution of the two equations yields the desired expression.8~L. That curve is omitted here because the computation can be made so readily with Equation A. for the example problem the value of Pru 11 increases from zero to 281 kN as the length of the pile increases from 0. g = = 3. For the determination of the length where the behavior changes from that of the pile of intermediate length to that of a long pile. (0..5L + 0.3 m the value of Ptult remains constant at 419 kN. which agrees well with the computed value. A.3 for the short pile that was re- strained against rotation at its top. Ptult = (9)(47. p . L = (I .7 through A.:.7.305) 9 then L = 7.6 m and Ptult = 281 kN.75b) Equations A. f = ptuJt ( 47.l 0.5f ] ~5 439 from Equation A. Ptult = 430/(0.

Broms suggested that repetitive loads cause a gradual decrease in the shear strength of the soil located in the immediate vicinity of a pile. two failure modes were considered.l. The value of the coefficient of subgrade reac- tion for normally consolidated clay should be 114 to l/6 of the initial value. Thus.l3) . Broms suggested that the increase in the deflection of a pile under lateral loading due to consolidation can be assumed to be the same as would take place with time for spread footings and rafts founded on the ground surface or at some distance below the ground surface. some ofBroms' remarks are presented here. be- cause Terzaghi's coefficients were for overconsolidated clays only. Epfp = pile stiffness. the effects of sustained loading would probably be minimal. a soil failure and a failure of the pile by the formation of a plastic hinge.ll) where a soil reaction modulus and. He stated that unpublished data indi- cate that repetitive loading can decrease the ultimate lateral resistance of the soil to about one-half its initial value.1 Ultimate latera/load for piles in cohesionless soil As for the case of cohesive soil. Also. With regard to values ofthe reaction modulus. A. The work of Terzaghi ( 1955) and other with respect to the reaction modulus have been discussed fully in the text. P: = 31YyzKP (A. Broms assumed that the ultimate lateral resistance is equal to three times the Rankine passive pressure.2. Because the nature of the loading is so important in regard to pile response.l2) KP = tan 2 ( 45+~) (A. Broms suggested that the use of a constant for the reaction modulus is valid only for a load of one-half to one-third of the ultimate lateral capacity of a pile.376 Piles under latera/loading (A.3 Effects of nature of loading on piles in cohesive soil The values of reaction modulus presented by Terzaghi are apparently for short-term load- ing. A. Broms presented equations and curves for computing the deflection at the groundline. Broms used work of himself and Vesic (196la.2 PILES IN COHESIONLESS SOILS A. Terzaghi did not discuss dynamic loading or the effects of repeated loading. 1961b) for selection of values. at a depth z below the ground surface the soil resistance per unit oflength Pz can be obtained from the following equations. depending on the unconfined compressive strength of the soil. Broms suggested that test data for footings on stiff clay indicate that the coeffi- cient of subgrade reaction to be used for long-time lateral deflections should be taken as 112 to 114 of the initial reaction modulus. With regard to a soil failure in cohe- sionless soil. His presentation follows the procedures presented elsewhere in this text.