Loading rate effects on pile load-displacement behaviour derived from back-analysis of two load testing procedures

by Charue, Nicolas

Abstract (Summary)
Soils, like several other materials, exhibit strong time-dependent behaviour which can be evidenced in terms of creep or strain-rate effects. The degree of this rheological behaviour varies with the type of soil, its structure, and with the stress history. This effect is exacerbated in pile load testing where the procedure duration tends to be shortened under increasing time pressures. The modelling needed to interpret the results therefore becomes more and more complex, including soil viscosity, wave radiation into the soil and other significant phenomena. The objective of the research reported herein is to refine the rheological parameters characterizing the influence of the loading rate within the framework of a relevant pile/soil interaction model fed with dynamic measurements acquired during pile Dynamic Load Tests (DLTs). The final goal is to predict and simulate the quasi-static pile load settlement curve. The pile/soil interaction system is described by a non-linear mass/spring/dashpot system supposed to represent the pile and the soil, with constitutive relationships existing within and between them. These relationships account for the static and the dynamic or rheologic behaviour. A back-analysis process based on a matching procedure between measured and computed quantities allows one to characterize the pile/soil interaction in terms of constitutive and rheologic parameters based on the dynamic measurements. After optimisation of the matching procedure, the parameters obtained are used to simulate the “static” load-settlement curve. The matching procedure is based on an automatic and stochastic parameter perturbation analysis. Since the parameters influence the system response with a relative weight, they are sorted in order to optimise all the parameters by successively retrieving the most influential ones and working on the remaining ones. The back-analysis performed on real dynamic measurements in this research leads to an improved pile/soil interaction model. The slippage between pile and soil along the pile shaft must be explicitly taken into account. This refinement increases the number of degrees of freedom needed to describe the pile/soil system but brings deeper insight into the behaviour of an interfacing zone of limited thickness surrounding the pile shaft.
Bibliographical Information:


School:Université catholique de Louvain

School Location:Belgium

Source Type:Master's Thesis

Keywords:dynamic load test loading rate effect pile displacement behaviour static back analysis


Date of Publication:10/25/2004

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