Presentation #7 - Bi-Directional Static Load Testing - Load Testing High Capacity Piles What Have We Learned?

Osterberg, Jorj
Organization: Deep Foundations Institute
Pages: 19
Publication Date: Jan 1, 2001
550 load tests of up to 150 MN have been completed on driven and bored piles using the Osterberg Load Cell. Because the test measures side shear and end bearing separately, much can be learned about the forces on the pile as it is loaded to ultimate capacity. At working loads side shear almost always far exceeds end bearing, with the distribution of shear and bearing greatly affected by disturbance occurring during drilling operations. Since much less movement is required to mobilize side shear than end bearing, most of the bearing develops after the working load is exceeded. Thus with insufficient bottom cleaning, safety against excessive settlement can be considerably reduced. Improved methods of drilling, hole cleaning, rebar cage installation and concrete placement are discussed. For rock socket piles it has been found that the ultimate test load far exceeds the working loads in most cases. This is almost always due to greater penetration into the rock than is required for adequate safety against excessive settlement. Factors affecting rock socket capacity are discussed. Increase of side shear and ultimate capacity with time is discussed. Case histories for driven and bored piles in soil and rock sockets are described.
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