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KINEMATIC SEISMIC RESPONSE OF SINGLE PILES AND PILE Groups By Ke Fan,' George Gazetas,? Amir Kaynia,? Eduardo Kausel,* and Shahid Ahmad* AsstRact: Results of a numerical study are presented on the kinematic response of groups of vertical floating piles connected through rigid massless caps and sub- jected to vertically propagating harmonic $-waves. Pile-soil and pile-pile interaction effects are modeled rigorously. Parametric results for the “effective seismic pile- cap motion,” normalized by the “free-field”” ground-surface motion, are displayed in dimensionless form for a number of typical pile-group configurations, in three idealized soil profiles: a homogeneous half-space, a half-space with modulus pro- portional to depth, and a two-layered stratum. It is shown that, whereas the influ- ence of the nature of the soil profile is profound at all frequencies, the effects of pile-group configuration, number of piles in the group, and relative spacing between Piles are usually insignificant for lateral displacements, but quite important for pile- cap rotations. Pile-head “fixity” conditions and the pile/soil modulus ratio are found to affect appreciably and in a similar way the seismic response of a single pile and of a pile group. INTRODUCTION Consider a vertical piled foundation supporting a structure and subjected to upward propagating (‘incident’) seismic waves. While an extremely flex- ible pile might simply follow the seismic motion of the ground, real piles in general “resist” and, hence, modify soil deformations. As a result, the incident seismic waves are “‘scattered”” and the seismic excitation to which the structure base is effectively subjected differs from the free-field motion and may generally include rotational (in addition to translational) compo- nents. In turn, piles experience bending, axial, and shearing stresses, which . depend on their overall rigidity relative to the soil. This wave-induced in- terplay between soil and piles is also affected by the kinematic constraints imposed at the head of the piles from the cap and the superstructure, and will be called hereafter kinematic soil-pile-foundation seismic interaction, or simply kinematic/seismic response. While, in real-life situations, rigorously modeling all the factors influ- encing the kinematic response is a formidable task, (especially if nonver- tically propagating seismic waves are expected to impinge on the piles, or if substantial soil nonlinearities are likely to develop) practically useful re- sults and valuable insight to the mechanics of soil-pile interaction during earthquake shaking can be obtained from proper linear analyses or simple idealized systems. Analyses of the kinematic seismic response of single piles and of pile groups have been reported by Blaney et al. (1976), Takemiya and Yamada 'Grad. Student of Civ. Engrg., State Univ. of New York, Buffalo, NY 14260. *Prof. of Civ. Engrg., State Univ. of New York, Buffalo, NY 14260. 3Assoc. Prof. of Civ. Engrg., Isfahan Univ. of Tech., Isfahan, Iran. “Prof. of Civ. Engrg., Massachusetts Inst. of Tech., Cambridge, MA 02139. *Assoc. Prof. of Engrg., State Univ. of New York, Buffalo, NY 14260. Note. Discussion open until May 1, 1992. To extend the closing date one month, a written request must be filed with the ASCE Manager of Journals. The manuscript for this paper was submitted for review and possible publication on September 15, 1990, This paper is part of the Journal of Geotechnical Engineering, Vol. 117, No. 12, December, 1991. ©ASCE, ISSN 0733-9410/91/0012-1860/$1.00 + $.15 per page. Paper No. 26457. 1860, SOW PROFILES o o Soil Young's Modulus 5 | La. | © Ea Fa FIG. ao FIG. 2. Idealized General Shape of Kinematic Displacement Factor, 1, = 1,(a,), Explaining Transition Frequency Factors @,, and a,» (1981), Flores-Berrones and Whitman (1982), Wolf and Von Arx (1978), Kaynia and Kausel (1982), Gazetas (1984), Barghouthi ( 1984), and Tazoh et al. (1988). A recent overview has been Presented by Novak (1991). Continuum as well as Winkler-type models were developed/used in these studies. However, the amount of published parametric results is very limited, especially for pile groups, and a number of questions Temain unanswered. By contrast, a wealth of data is presently available for the response of single piles and pile groups under dynamic force-and-moment loading at the top; such a loading arises during earthquakes from the inertial forces developing on the superstructure and the pile cap. To fill this gap, this Paper presents a comprehensive set of dimensionless 1861 SEISMIC RESPONSE OF SINGLE PILE Free-Head Pile Ep/Es=1000 L/4=20 + Ep/Es=1000 L/d=40 © £p/Es=10000 L/d=20 Ep/Es= 10000 L/s=40 os oi + oo + 00 on 02 03 04 os wd VE FIG. 3. Effect of L/d and E,/E, on Kinematic Seismic Response of Single Free- Head Piles in Homogeneous Soil (p/p, = 0.7, B = 0.05, and v, = 0.4) graphs that could be readily utilized in practical applications. Moreover, a comparative study of these graphs leads to some interesting conclusions that may contribute towards an improved appreciation of the nature of seismic pile-soil-pile interaction. PROBLEM DEFINITION AND METHODS OF SOLUTION Three categories of groups of floating vertical piles are studied in this paper: + A single free-head or fixed-head pile. + A rigidly capped pile group consisting of two, three, four, six, or nine piles in a row. 1862