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Computers and Geotechnics 41 (2012) 23–35

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An upper bound-based solution for the shape factors of bearing capacity
of footings under drained conditions using a parallelized mixed f.e. formulation
with quadratic velocity fields
A.N. Antão a,⇑, M. Vicente da Silva a, N. Guerra a, R. Delgado b
UNIC, Department of Civil Engineering, Faculty of Sciences and Technology, Universidade Nova de Lisboa, Quinta da Torre, 2829-516 Monte da Caparica, Portugal
Technical Department, Sociedade de Construções Soares da Costa, Grupo Soares da Costa, SGPS, SA, Rua de Santos Pousada, 220, EC Município, Apartado 4862,
4000-101 Porto, Portugal

a r t i c l e i n f o a b s t r a c t

Article history: A strict upper-bound limit analysis finite element formulation is used to estimate shape factors sc and sq
Received 24 June 2011 for determining the bearing capacity of shallow foundations using the classic bearing capacity formula.
Received in revised form 28 October 2011 The finite element formulation uses a quadratic approximation for the velocity field, an extension of a
Accepted 2 November 2011
previously published Augmented Lagrangian formulation with a linear velocity field, and was imple-
Available online 17 December 2011
mented for a parallel processing environment. Results from determining the limit loads under three-
dimensional conditions are presented and compared with previously published data. The results obtained
allow a strict upper-bound determination of the shape factors. Furthermore, a practical proposal for these
Shape factors
factors is made and compared with other proposals made by other authors.
Parallel processing Ó 2011 Published by Elsevier Ltd.
Quadratic elements

1. Introduction Shape factors sc and sq are often used to correct (2) in order to
take into account the three-dimensional effect on the bearing
The bearing capacity of a strip footing with width B acted upon capacity, due to the shape of the footing. For rectangular footing
by a vertical centered load can be expressed by Terzaghi [1] with width B and length L P B this equation becomes

u ¼ 0:5cBN c þ c0 Nc þ qN q ð1Þ
u ¼ qBL BL
u;c þ qu;q ¼ 0:5cBN c sc þ qN q sq ð3Þ
where c is the soil unit weight below the footing base level, c is the
effective cohesion, q is the surcharge at the level of the footing base, Several classical proposals [2–5] have been made for the values of
and Nc, Nc and Nq are bearing capacity factors which are functions of these shape factors. More recently, this problem has been addressed
the soil friction angle /0 . by other authors [6–9]. The present paper intends to contribute to
For a cohesionless material, (1) becomes the determination of shape factors and will use these recent works
for comparison. A strict upper bound limit analysis finite element
qB1 ¼ qB1 B1 formulation, employing quadratic approximations for the velocity
u u;c þ qu;q ¼ 0:5cBN c þ qN q ð2Þ
field, will be used. All results obtained in the present paper therefore
Eq. (2)—as well as (1)—is an approximation. In fact, the two terms assume an associated flow rule.
of (2) are solutions to two different problems: the first term, In order to achieve estimates for the shape factors with a signif-
u;c ¼ 0:5cBN c Þ, assumes a null surcharge q; the second one, icant level of accuracy, a parallel computing approach was used.
u;q ¼ qN q Þ, is obtained by considering the soil unit weight below Such a framework allows of significantly increasing the number
the level of the base of the footing to be equal to zero. The two effects of degrees of freedom involved in the analysis and, consequently,
are superposed but this is not theoretically correct, although it is improving the quality of the results.
traditionally accepted and it will also be accepted in the present All the computations reported in this paper were performed on
paper. a small scale cluster. This cluster comprises eight nodes, each
equipped with two Intel Xeon 2.00 GHz quad-core processors
⇑ Corresponding author. Tel.: +351 212948580; fax: +351 212948398. and with 16 GB of RAM memory. The cluster nodes are intercon-
E-mail address: (A.N. Antão). nected with a dedicated 2  Gigabit Ethernet network.

0266-352X/$ - see front matter Ó 2011 Published by Elsevier Ltd.

a body and surface directly. gree is related to the mathematical complexity of fulfilling locally face. e_ y . although the number of local element- ~ kt þ ~tÞ. [12]). For it is performed directly. the conventional linear and quadratic nodal approxi- Z mation functions (expressed as usual in the element local coordi- minimize k ¼ e ðuÞ Dðe_ Þ dX  P _ ð6aÞ nate system) [19]. solution method. ðkb þ b. e_ z . v y . in the finite element. v z gTðiÞ ¼ ½I½33 Q 1 . the elastic strains produce no effects on the way. com- posed of its two complementary parts (C = Cu [ Cr ^ Cu \ Cr = 2. ~ and t or ~t denote. given by the nodal velocity and plastic strain rate values.1. all formulations found in the literature that  exhibit a perfectly plastic behavior. while P e and Pk represent the work rate of the also share the same associated nodal velocity. expressed as usual by estab. 2e_ xz g ðiÞ ðiÞ ¼ ½I½66 L1 .24 A. for 2D and 3D cases. and the static boundary. where u_ denotes the velocity and B the standard differential com. the effectiveness of this minimization is due to the fact that load bearing capacity of the current kind of structures [10. ments are regarded as mixed since. since all elements sharing a common node. X. I½66 L4  e ð10bÞ e_ 2 Cc ð6eÞ where I[nn] denotes the identity matrix of n  n dimension. In order to be in the domain 2. e_ . Thus. . where b or b As a starting point. e. we present the extension of the Augmented ematically by the constraint.11]. The limitation of using face. ð7bÞ the global Cartesian referential system. which  exhibit an associated plastic flow rule. are able to produce strict upper bounds. therefore. dn. . the associated flow rule for any other kind of velocity fields. are considered to be inadmissible. the following mathematical programming. the veloc- b ity and the strain approximations are assumed to be independent It is a well established fact that the LA theorems can lead to from each other. Formulation In (6)–(7). based on As regards the (i)th finite element. In this section. because. preserving the capac- e_ 2 Cc ð5Þ ity of generating strict upper solutions of the original model. in the development of numerical models used in the direct estima- tion of the collapse loads of structures. recent and relevant papers on this field. based minimization is increased. . Lagrangian formulation for linear velocity field elements proposed in [17.g. the yield surface. Cu. When the state of stress lies on the sur. 2e_ yz . . . Such is the case for the formula- Associated with any state of stress. the ones located outside of the sur. as described in [17]. without any iterations. n. These ele- so-called load multiplier. expressed by the following linear functionals: strain rate field approximation (9) is a local one: in fact. / Computers and Geotechnics 41 (2012) 23–35 2. In contrast. and where k is the using the mixed finite elements outlined in Table 1. It should be pointed out that the velocity field approximation patibility operator. Body and surface forces ~ and ~t are. D function returns the plastic energy dissipation (8) is a global one. respectively. Mention must be made of the fact that. Z Z T The nodal linear approximation functions are also employed as Pk ¼ b u_ dX þ t T u_ dC. thus preventing the distortion of the approxima- Z Z tion functions when mapping the local coordinate system into e ¼ P ~T u_ dX þ b ~tT u_ dC. The plastic strain rate. In this work.. is a necessary condition to ensure the strict validity of the upper direction must be oriented according to the outward normal of bound theorem. whereas kb and kt are variable. this condition is expressed math. The limit analysis problem £): the kinematic boundary. e. . these qua- X Cr dratic elements can be considered as subparametric [20]. is cast: respectively. always fixed. In a concise retical point of view. for the whole body domain lapse mechanisms obtained must be fully compatible (namely.2. matrices L and Q collect. For this reason. rate per unit volume. subject to u_ ¼ 0 in Cu ð6bÞ In the case of 3D problems this is e_ ¼ Bu_ ð6cÞ u_ ðiÞ ¼ fv x . the external loads. Mixed finite element model of application of LA theorems. Antão et al. it is still possible to perform it The structure is subject to a given set of loads. just to cite a few of the most material response is elastic. use at most quadratic f ð rÞ ¼ 0 in X ð4Þ velocity fields based on triangular or tetrahedral element meshes. Cr. I½33 Q 10 ðiÞ d ð10aÞ _ ¼1 Pk ðuÞ ð6dÞ _ ðiÞ TðiÞ e ¼ fe_ x . respectively. The duality between _ ðiÞ e ¼L e in XðiÞ ð9Þ these two approaches has also been established (see. a positive scalar. 2e_ xy . and the vectors d and e are their associated X weights. constraint (6e) must be verified locally). from the theo- performed element-by-element. velocity fields with polynomials of no higher than the second de- The remaining states of stress. elastic strains are disregarded in this work and the relevant for the overall performance of the Uzawa based iterative material is treated as if it was rigid-plastic. To proceed.N.18] for the case of quadratic elements. More- over. This aspect is most this reason. inside the yield surface the tions reported in the works of [13–16]. respectively. r. where displacements are fixed and the external surface forces are Limit analysis (LA) theorems have been employed extensively prescribed. ð7aÞ X Cr shape functions. the structure must: As far as we know. particular attention was paid to not jeopardizing the where Cc defines the space of all strain states normal to the yield numerical effectiveness of the non-linear minimization procedure surface (4). . . the two field approximations are: mathematical optimization problems in order to obtain either a lower bound (using the static theorem) or an upper bound (using u_ ðiÞ ¼ Q ðiÞ d in XðiÞ ð8Þ the kinematic theorem) of the load multiplier associated with the ðiÞ ðiÞ structure’s maximum load bearing capacity. . the domain X is delimited by the boundary C. each ele- ment has its own independent strain weight vector. the optimization problem (6) is discretized forces distributions with a fixed amplitude. in the sense that the col- lishing an immutable yield surface. the material enters a plastic state and plastic flow can occur. the kinematic theorem.

e. lk and l are the term of (17). in (17). following the previously adopted strategy [17]. we outline the main steps of the Uzawa algorithm 2 i¼1 with block relaxation used to solve the Augmented Lagrangian form . l. From ! DðiÞ X nN the previous statement. also present in the functional L0 definition Min _ e_ . or. ðiÞ TðiÞ ðiÞ ðiÞ DðiÞ ðiÞ p ¼ L ðxn ÞBQ ðxn Þ d  e ð18Þ straint (12b) is perfectly equivalent to its continuous counterpart nN n¼1 nN (6e). And. in other words and domain. due to a coupling of the strain variables.e lk . lue of the approximation function. . controlled by a scalar penalty parameter r. where the Lagrangian functional yields nE Z Remark 1. lk Þ ¼ Lðu. consequently. lk Þ ¼ L0 þ pTðiÞ pðiÞ ð15Þ In this section. e ðuÞ Dðe_ Þ dX  P _ þ lk ð1  Pk Þ (13). the Gaussian points were replaced. n ¼ 1. The source of this coupling in which nN and nE denote. celed out. pðiÞ ¼ LTðiÞ ðxn ÞBQ ðiÞ ðxn Þ d ðiÞ Using the field aproximations (8) and (9). This leads to a minimization problem expressed as: This approach consists of the so-called Augmented Lagrangian Z method. Ln. Thus. nN ð12bÞ where D represents the element volume and xn denotes the natural coordinates of the nth Gaussian integration point. The p term. equals 1 at this vertex and is null at all the other vertices. since the plastic strain field approximation is a X nE  ~T Q ðiÞ dX þ b ~t T Q ðiÞ dC dðiÞ linear one. without violating the compat- LðiÞ lðiÞ ¼ rðiÞ . associated with the distinct nodes of the element. However. points located at the vertices of the element. Lagrange multipliers variables. e. respectively. it is possible to obtain nN n¼1 the following discrete Lagrangian form of this problem: ! DðiÞ X nN TðiÞ ðiÞ  L ðxn ÞL ðxn Þ eðiÞ ð17Þ min max Lðd. associated with vertex n tic strain field approximation. lÞ ¼ L0 ð12aÞ nN n¼1 d. Dimension Shape functions u_ approximation e_ approximation 2D 3 nodes 6 nodes 3 nodes 3D 4 nodes 10 nodes 4 nodes To proceed.N. tex of the element complies with the associated plastic flow rule. any coupling concerning the e variables is can- In order to enforce the compatibility constraint (6c). the number of nodes per was tracked down and identified as a consequence of the second element and the mesh number of elements. . for each finite Z Z ! element. e. a supple. . the definition of p yields then the flow rule holds at all points of the element domain. the Remark 1 led to the solution of this problem. if. the va- As discussed in [14]. However. A. . / Computers and Geotechnics 41 (2012) 23–35 25 Table 1 Finite element approximations. ð14Þ ibility. its volume integrals can be expressed in an exact manner þ l : ðBu_  e_ Þ dX ð11Þ X by sums: ! DðiÞ X nN where lk and l vector collect the Lagrange multipliers. In Lagrange-multiplier field. An attentive inspection of (17) leads to the conclusion X L0 ¼ DðLðiÞ eðiÞ Þ dX that the compatibility between the global and the local strain fields i¼1 XðiÞ is imposed uniquely at the nN Gaussian points. mentary quadratic penalty term. the global and local strain bond can be established using any set of nN non-collinear points belonging to the finite element represents the dual of the strain field (9). this formulation can be regarded þ lk 1  b Q ðiÞ dX þ tT Q ðiÞ dC d XðiÞ CðiÞ as a straightforward extension of the model reported in [17. the previous condition is sufficient to guarantee (6c) XðiÞ CðiÞ i¼1 r throughout the element domain. l. the plastic strain state at each ver. is responsible for establishing the relationship between the e_ 2Cc X global and the local strain fields.18] i¼1 r Z Z  for quadratic elements. when attempting to implement X nE þ lTðiÞ LTðiÞ ðBQ ðiÞ Þ dX d  ðiÞ LTðiÞ LðiÞ dX eðiÞ ð13Þ the same solution procedure it was observed that this was no longer i¼1 XðiÞ XðiÞ possible [21]. for a finite element with a linear plas.l subject to eðiÞ n 2 Cc . the stress field. it can be easily concluded that. fact.3. By definition. " Z Z ! # X nE T ðiÞ As presented up to this point. Resorting to Gaussian quadrature Z formulae. is added to the Lagrangian functional: 2. by the from a physical point of view. lk . Uzawa algorithm with block relaxation r X nE Lðd. Antão et al. the with Z Z Lagrange multiplier method is applied to the optimization problem ðiÞ (6) in order to introduce the constraints (6c) and (6d) into the pðiÞ ¼ LTðiÞ ðBQ ðiÞ Þ dX d  LTðiÞ LðiÞ dX eðiÞ ð16Þ XðiÞ XðiÞ objective function. It can be shown as in [21] that the Fortunately. Hence. one can easily infer that the discrete con.

the total element dissipation can be expressed as the sum of ! 1 F T yk  r the nodal contributions of the element vertices: dk ¼ yk  b . simultaneously.k 1 nents are defined in the principal strain space. D. the bearing capacity of a strip footing acted upon by a vertical centered load in a cohesionless material is given by Eq. with any further description of this matter and instead focus our complemented by the appendices of [17]. Fortunately. with aspects concerning attention on STEP 2. factor Nq can be obtained: . In the last decades. the implementation of commonly used yield criteria. and the normality space. Indeed. In the present work. Cc . algorithm recommended in [17] (see Appendix C) for the linear ele- rived from the imposition of the stationarity condition ments formulation. lastly. which is performed directly with no iterations. respectively. plastic dissipation function. the minimization In the governing system (19). STEP 1 requires the solution of a (often very large) e F¼ ~ dX þ ðQ ðiÞ ÞT b ðQ ðiÞ ÞT ~t dC ð26Þ sparse system of linear Eq. where nE and nN are the number of elements and the number of tion of quadratic model. The bearing capacity problem As seen in Section 1. But the relaxation STEP 1 affects. developed for our kind of matri- ces (symmetric. rLðd. and the factorization of the sub-matrix A. also be adopted for quadratic elements as long as it is applied vertex-by- leading to vertex. A more de. The STEP 2 minimization depends significantly on the yielding In this text we focus our main attention on the implementation criterion used. the governing system i¼1 XðiÞ CðiÞ r matrix remains unchanged throughout the entire iterative process. the minimization strategy employed for the original linear model Since STEPs 1 and 3 do not present any relevant differences could be maintained without losing its effectiveness. Our choice was based on the fact that it is an open source package. as note that these are the two factors that determine the strategy shown in Fig. has to be performed just once. a number of highly efficient direct parallel solvers have been developed and are currently available to the sci- entific community. XnE Z Z Finally. In this work. thus involving all the c0 Dðe_ Þ ¼ trðe_ Þ ð27Þ elements’ contributions at the same time. special attention was taken to ensure that nodes. all the nodal velocities’ degrees of freedom. lk Þ cohesion and friction angle. from the implementation used for the linear model. As mentioned before. ð20Þ r FT b Z X nN DðLðiÞ eðiÞ Þ dX ¼ DðiÞ ðLðiÞ ðxn ÞeðiÞ Þ ð29Þ with XðiÞ n¼1 yk ¼ A1 f ðek . an exact [4] bearing capacity Fig. 1. lk Þ ð21aÞ Moreover. lk Þ ¼ e ðBQ ðiÞ ðX n ÞÞT ðreðiÞ ðiÞ ment-by-element manner. during the deriva. (19). the Mohr–Coulomb criteria is assumed. Taking into account that the strain rate approximation (10b) is where A is symmetric and positive definite. 3. separately. The strain rate compo- ¼ ð19Þ FT 0 lk. Thus. respectively.4. c0 and /0 represent the material effective rA F dk f ðek . We The Uzawa algorithm with block relaxation comprises. which leads to a linear dissipation function and a non-linear nor- tipliers (henceforth identified as STEP 3) consist of element-by-ele. usually a significant cost in the overall computations. by a third stage where the Lagrange multipliers are updated. that must be solved for each iteration:  ( )   In the previous expression. mality rule constraint: ment procedures. lk Þ ¼ 0 ð22Þ can. and positive definite) and. F. f) can be de. d. their inclusion in a parallel scheme re- Fþ n  ln Þ ð25Þ i¼1 n¼1 nN quires no adjustments and displays perfect scalability features. we dispense tailed explanation of the solution procedure can be found in [18].N. Parallel implementation i¼1 n¼1 nN XnE Z Z The development of an efficient parallel implementation of our F¼ ðQ ðiÞ ÞT b dX þ ðQ ðiÞ ÞT t dC ð24Þ model is greatly facilitated by the characteristics of the solution ðiÞ ðiÞ i¼1 X Cr procedure adopted. linear. 1. sparse. a cyclic two step minimization procedure followed and complexity of the minimization algorithm. The latter minimization tan /0 results in a system of linear equations with the following block e_ 2 Cc () trðe_ Þ P ðje_ I j þ je_ II j þ je_ III jÞ sin / ð28Þ structure.26 A. Uzawa’s block relaxation algorithm. / Computers and Geotechnics 41 (2012) 23–35 of the discrete LA problem. (2). As a consequence of the above statements. all block definitions (A. The latter defines both the characteristics of the issues that differ from the linear model. if the normality rule holds at the vertices of the elements b¼A F 1 ð21bÞ it also holds throughout the element’s domain. in the particular case of Mohr–Coulomb material. STEPs 2 and 3 being executed in an ele- X nE X nN DðiÞ f ðek . Both the relaxation STEP 2 and the update of the Lagrange mul. XnE XnN DðiÞ A¼ ðBQ ðiÞ ðX n ÞÞT ðBQ ðiÞ ðX n ÞÞ ð23Þ 2. we used one of those software packages called PSPASES [22]. Antão et al. Assuming an associated flow rule. it allows a good interface between the data structure of the finite element code and the solver code.

3B/L 1 + (B/L) sin /0 Nc ¼ e 6 ðtan /0 Þ5p ð31Þ Kp = tan2 (45 + /0 /2). for these friction angles. Nc ¼ 1:5ðNq  1Þ tan /0 ð34Þ Eurocode 7 [26] recommends the following equation for Nc: Nc ¼ 2ðN q  1Þ tan /0 ð35Þ Fig. Below a friction angle of 10–15° most proposals seem to underestimate the bearing capacity factor. Definition of the numerical problem.4B/L 1 + (B/L) tan /0 using the following equation: Brinch Hansen [4] 1  0.24].1. Results obtained from the equations of sc and sq of Table 2 for /0 = 30°. It can be seen tions using the finite element program SUBLIM3d [27] and the that the different equations give results that can be quite different techniques described in Section 2 were performed to determine for both shape factors sc and sq but particularly for the case of sc. two proposals for Nc have been made [23. It can also be dent on the soil friction angle. A. . Antão et al. In separately each of the two terms of (3) for different L/B ratios fact. the three-dimensional effect can be ta- ken into account by shape factors sc and sq. Meyerhof’s proposal for this shape factor is depen- Nc/Nc. / Computers and Geotechnics 41 (2012) 23–35 27   /0 p tan /0 Table 2 Nq ¼ tan2 45 þ e ð30Þ Common equations for shape factors sc and sq.c .4] are appropriate for the most commonly used values of the friction angle and the equation from [26] clearly overestimates the bearing capacity factor.1KpB/L 1 + 0. The values Meyerhof [2] 1 + 0. 2. It can be seen that the solutions from [23.4B/L 1 + (B/L) sin /0 pþ3p2 tan /0 2 Eurocode 7 [26] 1  0. whereas the other proposals give values less than or are. Geometry of the model. Nc ¼ ðNq  1Þ tanð1:4/0 Þ ð33Þ and the one from [4]. Meyerhof’s proposal shows a shape factor sc greater than or and soil friction angles /0 .BL u. 4) and a surcharge q can be applied at the same level.24] are prac- tically the same for 15° 6 /0 6 50° and that the equation proposed Fig. Loads are centered and vertical and therefore only a quarter of the problem was modeled. for the case /0 = 30°. Common equations for 4. qUB. Finite element upper-bound calculations As also seen in Section 1. The different values of qUB. noted that the classic equations from [2. 4.N.BL u.c for different L/B and /0 were obtained. quite low and therefore the low ratio equal to 1. Fig. results sc and sq are summarized in Table 2. All calculations assumed a rigid footing with a rough base. 2 shows the ratio between each proposal for the bearing capac- ity factor Nc (for rough footing) and the exact values obtained by Martin [24]. although its values equal to 1. whereas the other proposals are not. the sur- charge q was considered equal to zero and a non-zero soil unit weight was assumed. 4. For the determination of the first term of (3). by Salgado [25] conservatively estimates the results obtained by Martin [24]. for rough footing base.1KpB/L obtained by [23] for rough footing can be accurately determined De Beer [3] and Vesic [5] 1  0. Martin is not significant for practical purposes. and [24] used the method of characteristics to obtain exact values for this bearing capacity. Fig. which allowed [Ncsc]UB to be determined: Fig. Ratio between different proposals for Nc and the one from [24]. 3. [25] proposed the following equation to approximate the results obtained by [23]: Nc ¼ ðNq  1Þ tanð1:32/0 Þ ð32Þ Other common equations are the one from [2]. 3 shows the comparison between the different equations of A set of three-dimensional finite element upper bound calcula- sc and sq presented in Table 2. Also. 2 Proposal sc sq Recently. The base of the footing was taken at the surface of the soil (Fig.

28 A.q ½Nq sq UB ¼ ð37Þ algorithm.7102 261.0236 45.2404 74.5664 45.7791 17. are greater for greater friction angles.6006 45.9434 213.9575 16.3169 3.5015 120.5 4. nisms involved in the failure to be inferred.2171 50.5° 45° 1 1.3549 12.5333 26.3200 383.6057 136.3226 42.536 9h 02 min examples is that CPU time is greater for greated soil friction angles.BL u.8705 77. Table 5 Two examples of the finite element meshes used are presented Calculation times for four examples of calculations for L/B = 5.7584 350. This concentration is automatically dealt with by the u. L/B /0 = 15° 20° 25° 30° 35° 37.7917 198.8262 6.0912 2.493 11.9948 14.0148 77.4592 18. for /0 = 25° the width of the mechanism (which is approx- that results have different levels of accuracy: The results of prob.4899 15.0537 240.6326 13.1785 47.5813 2 1. 6 shows the plastic deformation zones obtained for the cases The results are shown in Table 3. imately 2B) for L/B = 5 and for the determination of Ncsc would not lems with mechanisms involving lower volumes of soil (lower L/ B ratios and lower values of /0 ) will be more accurate than those with mechanisms involving larger volumes. L/B /0 = 15° 20° 25° 30° 35° 37. The two figures have different scales.1023 9. q It can also be seen that the volumes involved in the mechanisms The results are shown in Table 4. Case /0 (°) Number of global DOF Number of local DOF CPU time Table 5 includes.8542 4 4.9809 17.7817 8.8267 5 1. deformation zones correspond to zones with different values of ered zero.5130 306.9326 252. mined through Zones of more concentrated deformation can be observed in qUB.2855 206. the number of global degrees of freedom.7045 3 4.4747 43.5540 95.0315 2.2.6485 511.q .680 8h 56 min lation time for Ncsc and Nqsq and two values of the soil friction an- Nqsq 25 4.8177 82.4115 42. 5.9592 402.3312 3.1655 9. of the determination of Ncsc and Nqsq for two values of the friction Similarly.9451 8.9137 16.696 6h 13 min Ncsc 40 3.0570 359.2778 2 4.5264 176.9390 74.781 11.9009 136.643.BL u.1299 17.3859 125.0559 Fig.8038 113. which corresponds.1800 7.9536 4 1.6537 80.2782 17.5933 7.2411 3. Different calculations were performed using different L/ je_ I j þ je_ II j þ je_ III j.4616 1.822.425.6644 277. for obtaining the second term of (3).9512 104.3787 7.9965 55.357 10.5065 16.7811 113.070. for L/B = 5.9865 291.2 1.N.0168 6.3298 64.493 11.4178 490.9338 69. / Computers and Geotechnics 41 (2012) 23–35 Table 3 Values of [Ncsc]UB obtained for different L/B ratios and friction angles /0 .4888 75. Examples of the finite element meshes used in the calculations. qUB.2497 3 1. The results presented in Tables 3 and 4 were obtained using They are also greater in the determination of Nqsq than in the deter- about 800 thousand elements. Ncsc 25 3. Each represented volume is subdivided into 24 ten-node tetrahedral finite elements.2068 116.2902 3. the number of the local degrees of freedom and the calcu.2 and 5.7247 6. more or less.0336 192. mination of Ncsc. to the available memory of the computer cluster used.1908 487.4856 331.264 5h 10 min gle—25° and 40°.4721 30.993.4602 150.5° 40° 42.3068 1.3426 17.2830 36.191.2 5.5° 45° 1 5.7919 71. Mechanisms ½Nc sc UB ¼ ð36Þ 0:5cB Fig. Table 4 Values of [Nqsq]UB obtained for different L/B ratios and friction angles /0 .9227 162. This means Also.9892 24.2508 77.5977 6. The plastic deformation zones allow the mecha- B ratios and soil friction angles /0 .9444 45.1349 qUB.0747 7. and for greater L/B ratios.1549 2.0830 532.8355 131. These plastic charge q is assumed non-null and the soil unit weight c is consid.0008 5 4. Antão et al.8146 199.1575 7. the sur.9310 69.3832 186.5252 33.6231 25.7749 239.BL this figure.910.5 1.4884 7.4258 255.9809 130. in Fig.2924 67. 5.3277 17.c 4. angle—25° and 40°—and two L/B ratios—1.4453 1.7184 460.8160 465.5° 40° 42.5883 235.2643 71. Values of [Nqsq]UB were deter. The general tendency illustrated by these Nqsq 40 3.2343 319.941.2521 117.1844 422.8958 1.6946 107. .1535 123.4747 35.5508 170.

The not the case either for /0 = 40 or for /0 = 25° and Nqsq. / Computers and Geotechnics 41 (2012) 23–35 29 increase significantly if a greater L/B ratio was considered.2 and 5. Plastic deformation zones for the determination of Ncsc and Nqsq for two values of the soil friction angle – 25° and 40° – and two L/B ratios – 1.N. Fig. 6. results plotted in this figure correspond to a coarser mesh than For a better understanding of the mechanisms involved in the the ones used for obtaining the results previously presented. Antão et al. for colapse of these structures the velocity field is plotted in Fig. . This is for the case of the determination of Ncsc. A. L/B = 5 and /0 = 25°. 7 visualization purposes.

[8] using a finite element upper and lower bound limit analysis and also average weighted val- ues proposed by these authors. [9] using the finite difference code FLAC3D (except for /0 = 45°. 7. Values of Ncsc obtained from the UB finite element calculations: comparison with previously published results.3. as well as other results. used In Fig. Comparison with results obtained from other authors for comparison.  those obtained by Lyamin et al. / Computers and Geotechnics 41 (2012) 23–35 4. since these authors do not provide this information). L/B = 5 and /0 = 25°.30 A. 40° and 45°. the results presented in Fig. therefore. marked as ‘regular mesh’ which will be addressed Figs. 8 correspond to the values of sc pre- sented by the authors multiplied by the bearing capacity coeffi- cient obtained by Michalowski [28].N. the values of Ncsc were not Fig. which should correspond to the values effectively obtained by Zhu and Michalowski [7].  those obtained by Puzakov et al. 8. /0 equal to 25°. Fig. 30°. 35°. 8 the following results are used for comparison:  those obtained by Zhu and Michalowski [7] using the finite ele- ment stress–strain code ABAQUS (except for /0 = 45°. 8 and 9 include the results presented in Tables 3 and 4 for further in the paper. . Antão et al. They also include other results obtained within the present work. Velocity field in impending colapse for the case of the determination of Ncsc. the values of Ncsc are not directly reported by these authors. because those results are not available from these authors).

Values of Nqsq obtained from the UB finite element calculations: comparison with previously published results. Fig. 10. 9.N. A. / Computers and Geotechnics 41 (2012) 23–35 31 Fig. The indicated values of L/B mean 2D regular meshes with the same discretization as the 3D ones that were used for each L/B. Comparison between the values of Nc and Nq obtained from the upper bound finite element calculations using two-dimensional regular meshes and the reference values of [24] and from (30). Antão et al. .

6116 1.9630 0.4040 3.1014 1.32 A. Table 6 Values of sc obtained for different L/B ratios and friction angles /0 .0159 5 1.4B/L.0486 1. The other solution.9727 1.9484 0. .6064 1.2896 2. and from Meyerhof. same code multiplied by the values of sc they report.5746 1.3004 1.6003 1.1799 1.2233 1. corresponds to the Nc from [23] The values of Nqsq obtained in the present work were presented and the most common equation of sc. as a reference.0676 1. .4411 1.8527 0.1801 1. in Fig. the ½N c sc  tan /0 þ 1 sq ¼ ð38Þ exception seems to be for the case of /0 equal to 35° and Nc tan /0 þ 1 40°.1821 1.3104 1.4295 1.2039 1.6798 3.2846 1. Antão et al.2009 1.4090 1. for ref. the results obtained are finite element stress–strain code ABAQUS.8621 0.3850 1. Values of sc and sq obtained from the upper bound finite element calculations using regular meshes.1906 1.9252 0.2666 3.8820 2.use of Eurocode 7 seems to be unsafe for the cases of both used in this equation. which uses the solution is still quite significant.6776 1.2 1.4639 1.5 0.4360 1.9488 0.0994 1.2464 remarked by other authors.1676 1. The two common solutions are the ones from Eurocode 7 approximately constant for /0 = 30°.0207 1.5898 1. [8] are not directly comparable).1281 1. which would be exact if there were no tangen- within the present work and those from [9].0430 1.5615 1.5844 2 1.4467 4 0. for Nq sq were not directly obtained by these authors.2948 2.8461 3. / Computers and Geotechnics 41 (2012) 23–35 given by these authors. for comparison: Analysis of Fig.2783 Table 7 Values of sq obtained for different L/B ratios and friction angles /0 .3181 1.7440 2 0.8258 2.0813 2.8432 1. determined using Nq from (30) and sq from the previous equation.5026 2. given by 1  0.5° 40° 42. solutions based on three-dimensional mechanisms (the solu- sis [8] shows that the previous upper bound solution is clearly tions by Lyamin et al.5° 40° 42.8661 2. being erence. 8 are two common solutions and one other.9234 0.8924 0.4916 1.1880 1. 9.2640 1.4206 1.9877 1. although the upper bound results obtained in the present work are usually lower than those from [9]. using both Nc and sc suggested in [26.0799 1.5° 45° 1 0.7585 2.3483 2.5910 3 0.6897 1.Martin(1  0. which also show the following results. The exact value of the bearing capacity factor Nc is known and it is .2845 1. for lower L/B ratios. they  Comparison with other proposals show that: determined [Ncsc] and estimated sq using the approximate fol- .use of Meyerhof’s solution seems unsafe for very low L/B spond to the values of Nc obtained by those authors using the ratios.3633 1.4294 1. which are upper bound  Firstly. improved and that the gap with the best known lower bound  those obtained by Zhu and Michalowski [7]. comparison with other results issuing from limit analy.3087 1.9382 1.2519 1.5 1.9710 0.5224 1. 9 are therefore low values of /0 (25 and 30°) and high L/B ratios.3504 1. in fact the results clearly above the average weighted values from these authors.9492 1.7725 0.4444 4 1.9807 3.6343 2.6215 1.2733 1.0625 2.9759 1.0345 3 1.1564 1.8988 1. .3909 1.9284 3.2 0.1517 1.2]. L/B /0 = 15° 20° 25° 30° 35° 37. the values represented in Fig.9595 0. particularly for tial stresses applied by the footing to the soil: /0 > 30°.3626 5 0. The values represented in Fig.0170 1. .4420 1.9660 1.0425 1.8961 1.2309 1. ratio for /0 < 30° and decreases with Ł/B for /0 > 30°.1424 1.2654 1.N.2512 2. Also.5° 45° 1 1.1670 2.2825 1. 8 allows the following remarks:  those obtained by Michalowski [6].7533 1.0131 1.8691 1.2021 1. L/B /0 = 15° 20° 25° 30° 35° 37. [Ncsc] increases with the L/B Also in Fig.8903 2.6237 2.2362 1.1231 1.0352 1.9895 1.1001 1.8344 Fig.6577 1. 8 corre.8897 0.8190 0.0821 1.5191 1.9574 2.4B/L) is always safe.8147 0.use of Nc.there is reasonable agreement between the results obtained lowing equation.1300 1. 11.

for the cases of the problems with Determination of the shape factors sc and sq can be performed less accurate finite element results. the results from (39) and (40) would also be upper bounds and therefore.N. for ½Nc sc UB sc ¼ ð39Þ sq. the one from (30).1. as pre- viously mentioned. consistent. Antão et al. they could be significantly on using the results in Tables 3 and 4 and appropriate values of the the unsafe side. however. as the exact solution for Nq is known). are upper bounds and that those results are limited by the memory capacity of the computer cluster. 9 also includes three common solutions for Nqsq (in fact. But which bearing capacity factors are appropriate?  all common solutions lead to significantly lower values of Nq sq One immediate answer to the previous question would be that than the ones obtained from the calculations of the present the appropriate bearing capacity factor Nc is the one from [24] or work. They would be. ½Nq sq UB Analysis of Fig. for the case of Nq. Fig. given the bearing capacity factors Nc and Nq: scope of the methods being used in the present work. A. 9 allows the following remarks: sq ¼ ð40Þ Nq  the results obtained in the present work clearly improve the other upper bound solution [6]. Shape factors sc and sq the smaller problems and less accurate for the larger ones. But it should  all results obtained from [7] are lower than the ones obtained be taken into consideration that the results from Tables 3 and 4 from the calculations of the present work. . from [23] and. 12. This would mean that if the exact bearing 5. using the three different Nc equations for sq included in Table 2. giving more accurate results for 5. / Computers and Geotechnics 41 (2012) 23–35 33 Fig. Determination of the shape factors capacity factors are used. Values of sc obtained from the upper bound finite element calculations: comparison with previously published results.

regular mesh ment meshes. NUB c. 10. 11. in Fig. Being upper bounds. And the figure also shows used in (39) and (40) were similarly unsafe. 8 and 9. Values of sq obtained from the upper bound finite element calculations: comparison with previously published results. as in all known proposals.N. are not regular. However. compared respectively shape factor sq is always greater than 1. The the finite element calculations are. . these meshes were different for different L/B ratios and are shown in Tables 6 and 7 and represented in Fig.34 A. sq ¼ ð42Þ NUB q.regular mesh dimensional finite element meshes were used to estimate. less accurate means that greater ½Nq sq UB regular mesh collapse loads are obtained. as can be seen in Figs. Antão et al. cause of the fact that the finite element meshes were prepared to The shape factors were determined using obtain the best possible results with the available memory and. ½Nc sc UB regular mesh All computations for the determination of [Ncsc]UB and [Nqsq]UB sc ¼ ð41Þ were therefore repeated using less accurate but regular finite ele. / Computers and Geotechnics 41 (2012) 23–35 But what would be the appropriate way of obtaining more ade. with the values from [24] and from (30). for each different mesh used. Two. therefore. this is not possible to do exactly as described be. The shape factor sc is less than or equal to 1 for friction angles less Fig. 13. This figure shows that the results for Nq are much more accurate quate (in practical terms) results for the shape factors with this than the ones for Nc. This probably means that the results for Nqsq tool? Such results could be obtained if the bearing capacity factors are more accurate than those for Ncsc. the bearing capacity factors that could be The results of the shape factors obtained using these equations achieved. This could be found the importance of the use of the procedure for determining the using the same types of mesh used in each 3D calculation in 2D shape factors previously described: it can be seen that the results plane strain calculations for determining the bearing capacity for the bearing capacity factors are relatively dependent on the fi- factors. nite element mesh being used. It is clear that for different friction angles. The results of Nc and Nq obtained from both the sc and sq shape factors depend on the soil friction angle.

the present work are considerably less than the ones from that [16] Franck Pastor JP. improve the previous upper bound solution [8]. particularly for L/B < 3. for different soil fric. Salgado R. These shape factors are proposed in the present shape factors that should be used with exact values of Nc and Nq. North-Holland. Two. 1943. Inc. Inc. New York: Macmillan Publishing Company. Determination of the shape factors for use in the bearing capac. Prezzi M. Therefore. March 2011. The finite element method. Exact bearing capacity calculations using the method of characteristics. Turin. 2009. Shape factors for limit loads on square and rectangular footings. Solid and fluid mechanics: ity equation is a traditional foundation engineering problem. [19] Zienkiewicz O. Taylor R. from a prac- equal to 30° and greater than or equal to 1 for greater friction angles.and three-dimensional meshes are close to the ones proposed by Meyerhof [2]. Géotechnique 1970. as expected. Michalowski RL. 40°. But [4] Brinch Hansen J. it is approximately 1 (almost independently of L/B) for /0 published results of the same type. Experimental determination of the shape factors and the bearing capacity factors of sand. best estimates that could be found using the available tools. Commun Numer Methods Eng values of L/B.2061. Michalowski RL.37(4):57–64. oped. Implementação numérica tridimensional do teorema bound calculations were performed to determine the bearing cinemático da análise limite. A non-linear programming method approach for upper bound limit analysis. Ph. McGraw-Hill. 1990. ASCE J Geotech Geoenviron Eng 2005. 441-450. It can be seen that. Theoretical soil mechanics. Loute Etienne. for use with the exact values of Nc and Nq. the results of Ncsc and Nqsq The values of sc and sq determined using (41) and (42) and were divided by Nc and Nq determined with comparable (upper shown in Tables 6 and 7 and in Fig. Sloan S.47(8):647–62. Int J Numer Methods author. The common equations for the shape factor sq seem conser- Eng 2009. most common proposals for such shape coefficients give quite dif.06. tion angles and different footing rectangular ratios.72:1192–218. 4th ed.. solutions for Nc and Nq. McGraw-Hill. [24] Martin CM. ues of Nc (the ones that are guaranteed to be upper bounds) clearly [11] Lubliner J. [27] Vicente da Silva M. agreement with the ones from [7] for L/B P 3. Universidade Nova de Lisboa.2008. The finite element method. 1. Comparison with results from other authors per by ‘Fundação para a Ciência e Tecnologia’ (Project PTDC/ECM/ 70368/2006). Numerical limit analysis solutions for the for the velocities and linear approximation for the plastic strains. Shape factor sc for shallow footings. implemented in a parallel computing framework. Lyamin A. Upper-bound load estimates on square and rectangular obtained by Zhu and Michalowski [7] and by Puzakov et al. Can particularly true for the case of sc.. Sloan SW.fct. Geomech Eng 2009. Upper bound limit analysis with a parallel mixed finite element formulation. Antão A. 1997. In: Proceedings of the ninth SIAM For these calculations. [22] Joshi M. vol.99(1):45–73. Lions J. Geotechnical design. Lyamin A.D. Taylor R.31:835–65. in particular. 4. upper-bound shape factors show a considerable improvement over . 1999. The dynamics and non-linearity. Antão et al. European on the results of the best available upper bound solutions. Danish Geotech Inst 1970. [10] Davis R. who used a similar procedure strain elements and second-order cone programming. A revised and extended formula for bearing capacity. [17] Vicente da Silva M.78(3):254–74. 2005. thesis.N.012. An estimate of the influence of soil weight on bearing tions of the shape factors were obtained. the agreement is not as good for other values of the friction [9] Puzakov V. Plasticity and geomechanics. Formulation and solution of some plasticity problems as conic programs. conservative than the ones obtained from the best results. editors. [21] Vicente da Silva M.1002/cnm. vol. The theory of plasticity. Bull they are no longer guaranteed to be upper bounds.51(9):787–98.1(1):16–26. [9]. 1996. The values obtained using the regular [8] Lyamin AV.45(22–23):5788–804. They are greater than the values obtained by those authors. McGraw-Hill.dec. CEN. 6.2. p. 2004. based on a mixed approach with quadratic approximation [23] Hjiaj M.28:5–11. 1997.1(2):113–20.1002/nme. [15] Krabbenhøft K.unl. strict upper bound approxima. bearing capacity factor Nc. unsafe. for five values of the References soil friction angle. Karypis G.44:1533–49. Antão AN.1018. Towards a more practical approach. angle. The results for sq obtained using the regular meshes are in Handbook of numerical analysis (Part 2). Sloan S.. other authors and. 11 are approximations of the bound) accuracy. Analysis of ultimate loads of shallow foundations. the results obtained in 2008.. Selvadurai A. <http://www.1016/j. vol. Int J Solids Struct 2008. It should also be emphasized that these shape factors are the [3] De Beer EE. Committee for Standardization. part 1: general rules. Geotech J>. The engineering of foundations. Int J Solids Struct 2007. Int J Numer Methods Eng 2007. obtained results for sq using the regular meshes can be directly [14] Makrodimopoulos A. procedure described above show good agreement with the results [6] Michalowski RL. capacity of rigid footings with a rough base. The [13] Krabbenhøft K. New York: John Wiley and Sons. but they should be. This is [2] Meyerhof GG.42:1681–704. doi:10.20:387–411. 510 pp. Int J Solids Struct 2005. ASCE J Soil Mech Found Div 1973. IACMAG. Sloan SW. vative for all cases. The results from these authors Methods Geomech 2007. Martin C. Gustavson F. A set of three-dimensional finite element upper linear problems. / Computers and Geotechnics 41 (2012) 23–35 35 than 30°. The values of sq are much greater than the values of sc. 2008. work. Lyamin AV. L/B > 2.24(11):1107–19. [20] Zienkiewicz O. doi:10. The results of these capacity using limit analysis. for /0 = bearing capacity of footings in sand. Brussels. 2nd ed. The results from 193–312. doi:10. In: Proc. vol. for lesser values of this ratio. a finite element formulation was devel- conference on parallel processing for scientific computing. Kumar V. [7] Zhu M. The authors thank the financial contributions given to this pa- 5. Conclusions [18] Vicente da Silva M. Int J Numer Anal to estimate the shape factors. p. SUBLIM3d – strict upper bound limit analysis code – The obtained values of Ncsc and Nqsq were divided by the exact homepage. [28] Michalowski RL. Upper bound limit analysis using simplex compared with the values from [6]. the values of the shape factor using the regular meshes are considerably more [1] Terzaghi K. Basic formulation and ferent results. these authors give lower values of sq. Limit analysis of collapse states. for footings. they show a significant improve [26] Eurocode 7. It should be noted that the proposed shape factor sq was not tested for use in combination with a depth factor taking into account the Acknowledgement resistance of the soil above the foundation base. Géotechnique 2007. Cambridge University The results for sc obtained using the best Ncsc and the exact val. In: Ciarlet P. 4th ed. Limit analysis and convex programming: a decomposition approach of the kinematic mixed method. The results for sc obtained using the regular meshes and the [5] Vesic AS. Drescher A. conf. IV. Press. 12 and 13. Three-dimensional Mohr-coulomb limit roughly agree with the obtained in the present work for the greater analysis using semidefinite programming. particularly for L/B < 2. A. tical point of view. Gupta A. Pspases: an efficient and scalable parallel sparse direct solver. Soils Found 1997. Géotechnique 2001. 11th int. [12] Christiansen E. The obtained bearing capacity was compared with ones from [25] Salgado R.131(2):223–31. 2. Some recent research on bearing capacity of foundations. The results of the obtained values of the obtained shape factors sc and sq are represented in Figs. 2002.ijsolstr.