Minipiles And Compaction Grouting For Seismic Retrofit Of Transportation Structures In The New Madrid Fault Zone

Scherer, Steven D.
Organization: Deep Foundations Institute
Pages: 12
Publication Date: Jan 1, 2001
The highest earthquake risk in the United States east of the Rockies is along the New Madrid Fault System, which extends for 193 km (120 miles) through the Central Mississippi Valley from northeastern Arkansas, through southwestern Missouri, western Tennessee and western Kentucky to southern Illinois. Historically, this fault has generated some of the most powerful earthquakes in U.S. history, notably three Magnitude 8 events in 1811. Apart from the West Coast, this region experiences more earthquakes than anywhere else in the United States, with more than 200 events recorded along the fault annually. These events are typically of much lower magnitude than those experienced in California. Most are too small to be felt. However, should a significant event occur, damage can be expected to be widespread because of the underlying geology. In recent years, earthquake preparedness and seismic upgrade of vulnerable structures has become a focus for a number of State Departments of Transportation, including those in Illinois and Missouri where there is a potential for future damage. This paper presents three case histories illustrating three different techniques used to retrofit interstate highway bridge foundations bearing on potentially liquefiable soils. Friction minipiles were installed at the approach span of the I-57 bridge crossing the Mississippi River near Cairo, Illinois to provide additional support to the pile caps in the event of liquefaction of the underlying sands during a seismic event. In St Louis, Missouri, rock-socketed minipiles were installed to increase the capacity of drilled shaft foundations supporting a section of Interstate 64. In Mounds, Illinois, compaction grouting was used to densify loose sand deposits beneath a pile-supported interstate bridge on I-57.
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