Chapter 31

The Use of Bamboo and Bakau Piles for Soil Improvements and Application of Pile Raft System for the Construction of Embankment on Peats and Soft Soils
Paulus P. Rahardjo Professor of Geotechnical Engineering, Parahyangan Catholic University, Bandung, Indonesia


Construction of embankment on peats and soft soils has always been faced by the problems of instability and large settlement. The conventional system conducted in practice by Indonesian engineers is the use of bamboo pile raft system (known as “cerucuk”), owing to its availability and low cost. Another aspect to be considered is simple technology. Bakau piles, Ulin and Gelam timber are also used as alternatives to bamboo piles. When used under water table, these materials are durable. In the past decade, mini concrete pile raft has emerged to replace bamboo pile raft to carry bigger load and overcome the limitation of bamboo or timber piles. Despite the more popular application of this system until present, no method of design and analysis has been established, and approach for calculation are based on experience or simplification. This chapter contains general information on the occurrence and characteristics of soft soils in Indonesia, ideas and principles on the use of bamboo, other timber or minipile raft system, method of installation of pile raft under embankment over soft soils and peats, examples of the use of the system in a number of projects in Indonesia and proposed methods of calculation. Results of full-scale investigation and case histories are used to illustrate the behaviour of single or grouped piles, to observe the suitability for certain soil condition and to gain an overview of its applicability. It has been proven that the system gives advantages to the increase of the bearing capacity of the soft foundation soils and reduce the settlement of the embankment. The system has been successfully applied in many projects and should be further investigated. In summary, this chapter gives insight and overview of the use of bamboo or other timber piles and concrete pile raft system for geotechnical practice. 899


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Many important facilities, infrastructures and even houses are located on soft soils. In many cases, the thickness of the soft soil is more than 30 m, that it is not economical to construct light structures on concrete or steel piles. Problems with soft soils are stability (during construction) and large deformation or settlement. For such a condition the use of bamboo or bakau piles gives an alternative for cheap solutions and is very common in Indonesia. They can also be used for temporary support in the event of landslide, specially for shallow sliding plane. Bamboo or bakau piles are abundant in Indonesia and most South East Asian countries. The practical use of them are many, however very limited research and publications were seen. The piles vary in size, usually in the order of 70–110 mm in diameter and about 3.0–8.0 m long. The most common way for application is either using rows of single pile with 4 m long driven at a spacing of 40–80 cm or a bundle of 5 or 7 bamboo piles (called bamboo cluster) of 6.0–8.0 m long with 1.0–2.0 m distance between c/c. For embankment construction, woven bamboo mattress with one or more layers are laid on top of the piles for some purposes. The mattress provides sufficient tensile capacity to give additional stability and it separates the fill material from very soft clays or peats. To some extent, the mattress reduces differential settlement and distribute the load more uniformly and also it may give some effect of buoyancy. Spacing of the piles are from 0.30 to 1.50 m depending on the size of each pile or cluster and the need for stability. Basically, the piles are driven to depth without necessarily reaching stiff or bearing layer. In more developed countries, when piled embankment is designed, the piles are usually driven into bearing layer and the main purpose is to carry almost the full load of the embankment so that negligible load is to be carried out by the foundation soils. On the other hand, when “cerucuk” is selected, the embankment load is shared to the piles and the foundation soils through the mattress. Hence the piles are not intended to carry the full load of the embankment. The piles are called “cerucuk” in Indonesia for bamboo piles in group. In some cases, stability is often achieved by the lateral resistance of the pile group and most probably by buoyancy effect of the bamboo piles in the soft soils. Tested samples that were taken after driving of the piles do not show significant increase in the soil shear strength, but the area where bamboo piles are driven may have behaved as cluster of soft soil with some kind of reinforcement. A different assumption has been used for design but very little information about the real mechanism of the reinforcement effect was clarified. In fact, no standard method of design of “cerucuk” has been established and the subject still remain in research.


Most of the soft soil in Indonesia occurred as alluvial or recent deposit spreading all over the east coast of Sumatra and north coast of Java where many populated cities are located.

The Use of Bamboo and Bakau Piles for Soil Improvements and Application


In Kalimantan, the soft soils are found in the east and south of the island, and the rest are also found in Celebes and West Irian. Figure 1 shows distribution of soft soil in Indonesia and Southeast Asia. The soils can be distinguished as soft inorganic clay and silt or organic and peat soils. The formation could be from sediment carried by rivers or deposit of vegetation in low land and humid area. The majority of soft soils in Indonesia may consist of deposit of Holocene clay. This material was from the ejecta of volcanoes with a potentially significant content of volcanic ash (Barry and Rechlan, 2001). The properties of soft soils in Indonesia are different for those found on the coastal plains and those inland as a result of fresh water leaching. Younger (1990) and Brenner (1987) also identify that the presence of volcanic derived soils give significant effect on the soil properties. In many cases, the deposit is geologically very young. Cox (1970) provides a relationship between deposition rate and degree of consolidation as shown in Figure 2. The average degrees of consolidation for deltaic clays in South East Asia could be from 20 to 100% depending on their location. For sediments in Indonesia for instance, the degree of consolidation is predicted (from Figure 2) to be 70–80%. This means that the soft clays in marine environment is underconsolidated.

Figure 1. The occurrence of soft soil in Indonesia.


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Figure 2.

Relationship between rate of sedimentation and degree of consolidation (Cox 1970).

For normally consolidated marine clays, the cu/p values have been correlated with plasticity index such as suggested by Skempton or Bjerrum (1973), who provide curves for young and aged clays. However, when the shear strength of Indonesia soils are plotted to these curves, it falls below the line which probably relate to the underconsolidation condition. For soft clays in Jakarta, Semarang and Surabaya, some authors (Barry and Rachlan, 2001; Rahardjo,1996) suggest that the plasticity indices fall in the range of 50–70%. These values are related to cu/p ϕ 0.28–0.33 according to Bjerrum, however the factual data for marine soils in Indonesia show that the ratio of cu/p ϕ 0.20–0.24.


3.1. Use of Timber Piles for Temporary Support of Shallow Sliding Maybe the most common use of bamboo or bakau piles in the beginning was for the temporary support of shallow sliding of embankments or natural slopes. Figure 3 gives illustration of this application. The principle of this method is to make use of the perpendicular resistance of the piles along the sliding plane and hence it is important that penetration of the piles into potential sliding plane is sufficient to develop the required resistance. This principle also applies to the use of soil nailing for a slope stabilization. However, soil nails are stronger and can penetrate deeper into the slope not limited by the natural length such as bamboo or bakau piles. The number of piles required to support the sliding mass depend on the depth of sliding

The Use of Bamboo and Bakau Piles for Soil Improvements and Application


Figure 3. Use of timber piles for temporary support of sliding (Broms and Wong, 1985).

plane from ground surface and the corresponding area, the angle of slope, the lateral resistance of each pile and the residual shear strength of the soil along the sliding plane. 3.2. Pile Raft System for the Construction of Embankment on Peats and Soft Soils For many years, bamboo piles with raft have been used by Indonesians in the construction of embankment on soft soils. The main consideration is for stability reason and in certain cases to reduce the settlement. When the depth of the bearing soil is relatively shallow, the timber piles maybe driven to reach this layer so that higher resistance may be expected. The pile can be with have cap or without cap (Figures 4a,b). The use of pile cap is more effective if upper soil layer is sufficiently stiff or a blanket of sand is used under the pile cap. The caps will be resting on the stiffer layer so that a portion of the embankment load is carried by the pile caps. The main disadvantage for timber driven into hard bearing layer is the risk of buckling due to the development of negative skin friction or the fact that the thickness of the soft soils shortened to less than the length of the piles due to consolidation settlement. In most cases the depth of the soft soils is much bigger than the available length of the timber, and hence the piles are usually spaced at much shorter distance (say 30–50 cm) (Figure 4c). The bamboo piles are generally provided with mattress made of woven bamboos or geotextile. In this case the main role of the piles and the mattress is to reinforce the soft soil and form a cluster to support the load of the embankment and to reduce differential settlement and hence minimize damages of the road pavement and to increase the stability during construction. In practice, this system works very well. The reduction of settlement does not significantly depend on the spacing of the bamboo piles and based on


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Figure 4.

The use of timber piles to support embankment on soft soil.

the full scale experimental study in Jakarta, it is reported that compared to untreated ground, the use of bamboo pile raft system reduced settlement of the soft ground to 30% (Rahadian et al., 2000b). 3.3. Bamboo Cluster for Reinforcement of Coastal Revetment For coastal revetment to protect high fill reclamation work and sea waves, longer and stronger piles are needed. The common practice in Indonesia is to use cluster of bamboo of 3–7 pieces of bamboo tightened together to make a big pile. The raft is also made of several sheets (3–7 layers) to make a strong mattress as shown in Figure 5. This structure is for protection of reclaimed land, north of Jakarta. The typical bamboo cluster is shown in Figure 6. The main difference between revetment and road embankment is that the load acting on the revetment is not symmetrical. The active earth pressure acting on the landside may cause the structure to move laterally. Other aspects to consider are that the construction is under water and daily tide level may influence the stability, and hence the embankment fill material is generally of draining type. 3.4. Use of Timber Piles for Embankment on the Bridge Approach The construction of a bridge across river on soft soil may pose problem of sliding in the longitudinal direction. The bridge approach is normally elevated and an embankment is constructed to reach the elevation. It is expected that large settlement and stability will be a big issue and, the use of bamboo or bakau piles is suitable under the approach (Figure 7). 3.5. Use of Bamboo Piles for Stability of Excavation in Soft Clay For excavation where sheet pile is used, bamboo piles can be installed behind sheet pile wall or at the bottom of excavation in front of the sheet pile to increase the stability. Broms and Wong (1985) suggested that the role of the timber piles is to reduce active earth pressure (when installed behind the wall) and to increase the passive pressure (when installed in front of the wall), however the real mechanism of this assumption is still unverified and

The Use of Bamboo and Bakau Piles for Soil Improvements and Application


Figure 5. The use of bamboo cluster and raft to support revetment for coastal reclamation.

Figure 6. A cluster of piles consisting of seven bamboos.

further research is needed. Figure 8 shows the method to estimate reduction of active pressure and addition of passive pressure. The magnitude of active pressure reduction or passive pressure increase should be influenced by the length, spacing, and extent of the timber piles installed. Global stability needs to be considered as well. 3.6. Method of Construction Method of installation of bamboo or bakau piles varies depending on the available equipment. For a bamboo pile of 4 m long, a backhoe can be used to push the pile into soft ground. In certain areas where heavy equipment is not available, local drop hammer is


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Figure 7. Tensar reinforced foundation platform over bakau piles–Sungai Serekai–Bridge Abutment–Sarawak (Younger, 1988).

Figure 8. The use of piles for the stability of excavation (Broms and Wong, 1985).

common since local technology is made possible. The hammer weight is usually in the range of 300–700 kg. Such a method is illustrated by Figure 9. Figure 10 explains the sequence of construction of embankments on soft soils with bamboo pile-raft system for a road project in Pelintung, Riau (East Sumatra). In this project, peats are found all over the area with thickness of 2 m near the coast to about 8 m, 3 km away from the coastline. The bamboo pile raft was designed with 6 m and 12 m length of bamboo where the longer ones were positioned on the edge of the road and the shorter ones were for the middle of the embankment. The bamboo piles were driven and bamboo mattress bound in two layers is then laid on the ground surface before spreading the fill

The Use of Bamboo and Bakau Piles for Soil Improvements and Application


Figure 9. Installation of Bakau Piles with drop hammer (Broms and Wong, 1985).

material. The fill placement was followed by compaction as shown on Figure 10f. This system has been successfully applied.




Instead of the use of bakau and bamboo piles, mini concrete pile may replace them in case water table is low or permanent structure is required. 4.1. Piles and Geosynthetic for Embankment Construction Geosynthetic reinforcement is sometimes required to provide additional stability in the construction of embankment on soft soil. However, it can only help stability to a certain limit. Geosynthetic cannot reduce pore water pressure during fill placement and hence settlement is still a big issue. In Europe, it is common to combine pile with cap underneath the Geosynthetic to carry the load of embankment by the axial capacity of the pile. The Geosynthetic reinforcement carry part of the embankment load so that the soft soil stresses are reduced (Lawson, 1992) (Figure 11). 4.2. Mini Pile Raft System for Embankment Construction on Soft Soils Simanjuntak (1997) introduced a similar system of combination of mini concrete pile and pile cap connected to each other. This connection enables tensile forces to be developed


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Figure 10. The sequence of embankment construction on soft soil with bamboo pile raft system at Pelintung, Riau, East Sumatra. (a) Driving bamboo piles; (b) arrangement of the 1st bamboo raft layer; (c) installation of 2nd raft layer; (d) completion of bamboo pile raft (“cerucuk”); (e) placement and spreading of fill material; (f) fill compaction.

The Use of Bamboo and Bakau Piles for Soil Improvements and Application


Figure 11.

Role of geosynthetic in transferring the vertical embankment loading onto the pile caps (Lawson, 1992).

due to the load of embankment. The piles used may have a dimensions of 9 9 cm2 to 13 13 cm2, and the pile cap range from 74 74 to 110 110 cm2. Basically this system is similar to the Geosynthetic reinforcement pile embankment described by Lawson, except that the concrete mattress is more rigid and designed to carry partial embankment load and acting as shallow foundation and hence it is a pile raft system. In this case the bearing capacity of the pile cap is supplementary to the piles. The system was implemented for the first time in Jakarta in the year 2000 and research was conducted at Bereng Bengkel, Kalimantan in the same year (Rahadian and Nurjaman, 2000a).



Problems of constructing embankment on soft soil is governed directly by the shearing resistance of the foundation soils; in other words by the bearing capacity of the soils. Consideration in the stability of embankment on soft soil is most critical during construction. This is due to low permeability of the soft clay which does not allow drainage and consolidation during loading, so that very little or no shearing resistance of the foundation soil may be developed. However, after consolidation takes place the resulting shearing resistance in the foundation soil will completely remove the need for reinforcement. This situation is explained in Figure 12. When the bamboo piles are to carry embankment load, the load is transferred through the mattress and hence the requirement for pile spacing is governed by the height of the embankment, the strength of the foundation soil, rigidity of the mattress and the length of pile (hence the axial bearing capacity of the soil). The idea of mini concrete pile and pile raft system is almost similar to piled embankment with Geosynthetic reinforcement. The principle is that the Geosynthetic reinforcement or the raft is required to transfer the embankment loading directly to the piles, thus the soft/foundation soil support negligible


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Figure 12.

Influence of reinforcement on stability of embankment on soft soils (Jewell, 1987).

load. The use of piles as foundation improves stability and reduce settlement. It also enables embankment to be constructed to any height at an unrestricted rate (Lawson, 1992). Conventionally, the bearing capacity of the pile should be sufficient to carry the weight of the fill above it with an equivalent area of s2, where s is the distance between pile. Figure 13 illustrates the method. This approach is too conservative since in practice, the mattress or pile cap also carry the embankment load and acting interactively with the pile. For global stability a number of approaches are suggested by Broms and Wong (1985), Poulos and Davis (1980), Rahardjo (1996) and others. 5.1. Method Suggested by Poulos and Davis (1980) Poulos and Davis (1980) suggested that the lateral resistance of the pile should be used for stability analysis. Any limit equilibrium analysis such as Bishop method can be used, where additional safety factor is added as summation of the ultimate capacity of the pile times the moment arm of each pile (Figure 14): FS (Mr ΔMr) Md

where Md is the driving moment, Mr is the resisting moment by the shear strength of the soils Hi ri is the additional resisting moment by the piles. ΔMr 5.2. Method Suggested by Broms & Wong (1985) Broms and Wong (1985) suggested that the contribution of the pile to the slope stability is due to axial capacity of pile. The method is basically similar to Poulos and Davis method

The Use of Bamboo and Bakau Piles for Soil Improvements and Application


Figure 13.

Determination of maximum pile spacing (Lawson, 1992).

Figure 14.

Approach for stability analysis based on suggestion by Poulos and Davis (1980).


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(1980) except that the piles contribution to the stability are the summation of the axial capacity instead of the lateral capacity (Figure 15). The stability at the toe may be analysed by the moment equilibrium equation involving the calculation of active earth pressure, the weight of the lower portion of the embankment and the pile resistance (Figure 16).

Figure 15.

Approach for stability analysis based on suggestion by Broms and Wong (1985).

Figure 16.

Stability at the toe of the slope (Broms and Wong, 1985).

The Use of Bamboo and Bakau Piles for Soil Improvements and Application


5.3. Method Suggested by Rahardjo (1996) Rahardjo (1996) suggested that the inclusion of bamboo piles may be modelled as the improved ground or a cluster with increased shear strength. For simplicity, the cohesion in vertical direction in increased by Pult s2 and the cohesion in horizontal direction is increased by Hult s2, where Pult is the axial bearing capacity of the bamboo pile, Hult the ultimate lateral resistance and s the distance between piles. It has to be understood that Pult and Hult is dependent on the initial shear strength of the soils and the calculation is valid for undrained condition. For long-term analysis, the effective or drained soil parameters should be used and the increase of shear strength after consolidation is taken into account. 5.4. Finite Element Analysis for Bamboo Pile Raft System It seem that Broms’s approach is more realistic when the tip of the pile reaches bearing stratum and negligible lateral movement may occur in the pile. Poulos approach is more reliable for floating pile. In fact, soil layering and method of construction are also important. Rahardjo approach may be used for conventional analysis as well as finite element method. Probably the best approach at present time by using finite element modelling or empirical method. Rahardjo and Handoko (2004) show the behaviour of timber pile under tank foundation on soft soil in Samarinda, East Kalimantan. The tank has 9 m height of liquid and the soil condition is very soft clay (known as Delta Mahakam deposit) of 30 m depth. The use of pile foundation will require at least 35 m length of piles and hence cerucuk was selected with the risk of settlement. The upper soft layer was replaced by 1.5-m-thick compacted sand. Since the upper layer is improved with much more stiff soil, significant shear may result in the pile at the boundary of the soil layer with significantly different moduli. Figures 17 and 18 show the modelling and result of analysis for internal forces (shear and moment) to the pile. The result of finite element analysis conclude that the previous approach need to be revised accordingly since the behaviour of the timber pile is different for pile in the periphery and the pile in the center. Shear and moment for periphery piles are 10 times than those for center piles.



6.1. Research on Lateral Capacity of Bamboo Pile The work was conducted at Kalipucang, Banjar, West Java by Brotodihardjo et al. (1991) consisting of lateral load test on single pile and grouped piles of bamboo. The soil condition is soft silty clays with average tip resistance of CPT, qc 5 kg/cm2 through the entire depth of the bamboo piles. The water content ranges from 69% to 85% with an average value of 78%. The liquid limit is 77.7–110.2% and plastic limit 38.4–44.4%. Laboratory strength test on the soil shows the value of c 3.7–12.5 kPa and φ 3.5–17°. The vane shear tests on the soft clay give a range of undrained shear strength of Su 2–10 kPa, however for analysis, the researchers suggested an average value of Su 3 kPa. Theoretically, the lateral response of


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Figure 17.

Modelling of timber pile under tank foundation (Rahardjo and Handoko, 2004).

Figure 18.

Typical shear and moment over the length of the bamboo pile in the periphery (Rahardjo and Handoko, 2004).

the pile depends on the strength of the soil and the rigidity of the pile. The following data gives the properties of bamboo from Banjar, West Java:
● ● ●

Species: Gigantochloa Apus Kurz Bambusaceae Local name: Bambu Tali, Banjar Average outside diameter: 7.15 cm

The Use of Bamboo and Bakau Piles for Soil Improvements and Application
● ● ●


Elastic moduli (E): 170.63 kg/cm2 Tensile strength (σa): 1000 – 4000 kg/cm2 Compressive strength (σt): 250 –1000 kg/cm2

The location of research work is at the mouth of Kalipucang river in the bank of Citanduy river surrounded by rice fields. There are a number of tests conducted; however only two selected tests will be reported in this chapter, a single bamboo pile and a group of seven bamboos. Length of pile embedment is 4.0 m and all bamboos were tested under free head condition. The test result is shown in Figure 19. A single pile fails under lateral load of 225 kg, while group of seven bamboos reached resistance of 600 kg in the condition of yielding. Further test on the group, resulted in an ultimate group capacity of 900 kg. Hence the group efficiency was 0.57. 6.2. Case on the Use of Mini Concrete Pile Raft System Rahadian and Nurjaman (2000a) reported this system for case at Sentiong River, Jakarta. In this project, previously, embankment was supported using concrete sheet pile that failed during construction. The soft soil is 10 m indepth with average shear strength of 6–10 kPa. The underlying layer is medium to stiff clay with various thicknesses. Reconstruction was conducted using mini concrete pile raft system, which is driven to 12 m. The concrete mattress consisted of segmental cap of 74 74 cm2 and connected to each other. The piles were positioned under each pile cap. Finite element analysis conducted by Rahadian and Nurjaman (2000a) give a safety factor of 0.46 without the reinforcement and rising to 1.26 by the inclusion of mini concrete pile. Figures 20 and 21 illustrate the construction activities.

Lateral load test result 700 600 Lateral load (kg) 500 400 300 200 100 0 0 20 40 Deflection (mm) Figure 19. Compression of horizontal resistance of single bamboo pile and group of seven bamboos (data from Brotodihardjo et al., 1991). 60 80 1 pile 7 piles


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Figure 20.

The construction of mini concrete pile raft in Jakarta (JHS Pile Document).

Figure 21.

Compaction of fill material over concrete mattress (JHS Pile Document).

6.3. Design and Construction of Embankment on Soft Soils with Bamboo Pile-Raft System for Road Project at Pelintung, East Sumatra The project site is located in Pelintung, Sumatera, about 30 km east of Dumai, across the Rupat Island, where an industrial site is being developed. Figure 22 shows the location and geology of the project area. Based on the geological map, the area is described as coastal plain formed during Holocene period. The plain is dominated by soft clay sediment and vegetation forms the peats. The main goal of the design is to improve the soil for road construction as shown in Figure 23. The testing program consists of 4 drilling holes of 30 m depth with SPT and sampling, 3 DMTs and 14 CPTs. Based on data from drilling holes, the site may be characterized as soft recent deposits consisting of about 6 m peats underlined by soft silty clays. The void ratio of peats are found as high as 3–16 and water content in the range of 250–900%. The void ratio and water content of soft clays are substantially lower than the peats (Figure 24).

The Use of Bamboo and Bakau Piles for Soil Improvements and Application


Figure 22. Geology of site and location of the project.

As a consequence of the high water content the peats is very compressible as depicted by compression index (Figure 25). The range of Cc is as high as 2–6 while the clay layer has a much, smaller range of 0.3–1.0. Creep is also an issue to the deformation of the soils in long term , and hence it is interesting to measure the creep parameter represented by Cα. Owing to the fact that the peat has much higher void than the clay, it is shown that the coefficient of consolidation (and hence the permeability) could be 2–30 times higher. It is interesting that the value of Cv decreases rapidly by overburden pressure. Figure 26 shows typical analysis for the embankment on peats and soft soil where the pile raft system is modelled as a cluster with increasing shear strength using Rahardjo approach (1996). The designed shear strength of the peats is 5 kPa and increased to 13 kPa considering the presence of the bamboo piles. The safety factor during construction reached 1.3 (minimum required 1.25). Construction method is presented in Figure 10.



Many infrastructures are located on soft soils and peats. In certain cases where the thickness of the soft soils is very deep, the use of pile foundation is not economical specially for light structure such as road pavement. Bamboo piles provide cheap solution and is reliable to maintain stability and to reduce settlement and differential settlement. The risk of long-term settlement can be overcome by nonpermanent pavement such as paving block.


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CPT-02 CPT-01


DMT-01 DDMT-01


4.5 0


CPT-05 CPT-08



6.50 7.00

6.00 6.50

7.50 7.00
BH-02 CPT-10

Legend : Drilling / SPT CPT 7.50
DMT-04 DDMT-02 CPT-12 DMT-03 CPT-13 BH-04 CPT-14 DMT-02 DDMT-03


8.00 B
Figure 23.

Project description and testing programme.

The disadvantage of the bamboo and timber piles is the durability specially if the system is applied above water table or moisture changes can occur due to ground water fluctuation. However, once the soft soil is consolidated, the need for reinforcement and stability is replaced by the increase of the shear strength of the foundation soils. Mini concrete pile raft system emerges as an alternative for more permanent and heavier load and is subject to further research.

600 m


300 m

300 m

5.50 6.00



300 m

The Use of Bamboo and Bakau Piles for Soil Improvements and Application
Water content (%)
0 0 250 500 750 1000 0 0


Initial void ratio
5 10 15 20



Depth (m)

Depth (m)
Peats Clay





Peats Clay


Figure 24. Water content and void ratio vs depth (Rahardjo et al., 2004).

Compression Index (Cc)
0 0 2 4 6 0 0 0.1

0.2 0.3



Depth (m)


Depth (m)




Peats Clay
20 20

Peats Clay

Figure 25.

Compression index and values of Cα with depth (Rahardjo et al., 2004).

A number of methods for analysis have been proposed and yet an established one should be backed up by more experimental research. Some examples have been presented and in summary the paper gives insight on the practical use of the bamboo and other timber piles for the construction of embankment on soft soils.


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Figure 26.

Example of analysis assuming simplification of shear strength increase in the cluster due to the inclusion of bamboo piles.

REFERENCES Barry, A.J. & Rachlan, A. (2001) Embankment on soft soils in North Java. Embankments on Soft Soils, Proceedings of the Preconference volume, International Conference on In situ Measurement of Soil Properties and Case Histories, Bali, Indonesia. Bjerrum, L. (1973) Problems of Soil Mechanics and Construction on Soft Clays, Proceedings of the 8th International Conference on Soil Mechanics and Foundation Engineering, Moscow. Bo, M.W., Rahardjo, P.P. & Bawajee, W. (1998) Physical Characteristic of Jakarta Bay Silt, Proceedings of the 13th Southeast Asian Geotechnical Conference, 16–20 November, 1998, Taipei, Taiwan, ROC. Broms, B.B. & Wong, I.H. (1985) Embankment Piles. Soil Improvement Methods, Proceedings of the Third International Geotechnical Seminar, Nanyang Technological Institute, Singapore, 27–29 November 1985. Brotodihardjo, W.Y., Arnaya, W.T. & Sundaya, A. (1991) Penelitian Gaya Horizontal pada Pondasi Cerucuk Lokasi Daerah Kalipucang, Banjar, Jawa Barat (Research on Lateral Capacity of Bamboo Piles Group at Kalipucang, Banjar, West Java). Pusat Penelitian dan Pengembangan Pengairan. Cox, J.B. (1970) The Distribution and Formation of Recent Sediments in South East Asia, Proceedings of the 2nd South East Asia Conference on Soil Engineering, pp. 30–47. Jewell, R.A. (1982). A Limit Equilibrium Design Method for Reinforced Embankments on Soft Foundations., Proceedings of the 2nd International Conference on Geotextiles, Las Vegas, pp 671–676. Jewell, R.A. (1987) The Mechanics of Reinforced Embankments on Soft Soils, Report No. OUEL 1694/87, University of Oxford.

The Use of Bamboo and Bakau Piles for Soil Improvements and Application


Lawson, C.R. (1992) Applied Ground Improvement Techniques, Workshop Applied Ground Improvement Techniques. Southeast Asian Geotechnical Society (SEAGS), Asian Institute of Technology, Bangkok, Thailand. Poulos, H.G. & Davis, E.H. (1980) Pile Foundation and Design, Wiley New York. Rahadian, H. & Nurjaman, H.N. (2000a) Sistem Cerucuk Matras Beton untuk Konstruksi Jalan di Atas Tanah Lunak, Studi Kasus Penerapan di Perbaikan Oprit Kali Sentiong Ancol Jakarta dan Uji Timbunan pada Tanah Gambut di Bereng Bengkel Kalimantan Tengah (Minipile Raft System for the Construction of Road on Soft Soils, Case Study on the Application of Stabilization for Bridge Approach Embankment at Sentiong River, Ancol, Jakarta, and Embankment Test for Peats at Bereng Bengkel, Central Kalimantan), Proceedings of the Pertemuan Ilmiah Tahunan IV, INDO-GEO 2000 HATTI, 22–23 November 2000. Rahadian, H., Prabudi, S. & Chandra, Y.P. (2000b) Perilaku Uji Timbunan di atas Tanah Lunak Menggunakan Kombinasi Cerucuk Kayu dan Stabilitas Cleanset di Penjaringan Jakarta (The behaviour of embankment on soft soils reinforced by timber raft and stabilized by clean set at Penjaringan, Jakarta), Proceedings of the Pertemuan Ilmiah Tahunan IV, INDO-GEO 2000 HATTI, 22–23 November 2000. Rahardjo, P.P. (1996) Karakteristik Tanah Lempung Marina (Characteristics of Soft Marine Clays), Proceedings of the Seminar on Problematic Soils, Surabaya. Rahardjo, P.P. (1998) Site Characterization for Reclamation Project at North Jakarta, Proceedings of the 1st International Conference on Site Characterization, Atlanta, USA. Rahardjo. P.P. & Handoko, A. (2004) Design Report of Tank Foundation on Soft Soil at Samarinda, East Kalimantan. Rahardjo, P.P. & Sentosa, L. (2003) Design Report on Road Embankment on Peats and Soft Soils at Pelintung, Riau, East Sumatera. Rahardjo, P.P., Halim, Y. & Sentosa, L. (2004) Use of Dilatometer and Dual Dilatometer Test for Soft Soils and Peats, Proceedings of the 2nd International Conference on Site Characterization, Porto, 19–22 September, 2004. Rahardjo, P.P., Meilinda, L. & Yuniati, L. (2001) Assessment of Geotechnical Instrumentation in Reclamation Work on Soft Clays at North Semarang. Embankments on Soft Soils, Proceedings of the Preconference volume, International Conference on In situ Measurement of Soil Properties and Case Histories, Bali, Indonesia. Younger, J.S. (1988) Ground Improvement Options for Highways in Indonesia, Proceedings of the Short Course and Seminar on Ground Improvement, Application to Indonesia Soft Soils, Universitas Kristen Indonesia and Asian Institute of Technology in Cooperation with Himpunan Ahli Tanah Indonesia, Jakarta, Indonesia, 23–26 Agustus 1988, pp. S3/i–S3/32.

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