Secant Pile Shoring - Developments In Design And Construction

Lindquist, Eric S.
Organization: Deep Foundations Institute
Pages: 8
Publication Date: Jan 1, 2011
High groundwater levels combined with variable soil and rock profiles present challenges to the design and construction of deep excavation support systems. Increasingly, secant piling techniques are the preferred technical solution for shoring in these cases. Recent developments in drilling equipment, tooling and procedures allow cost-effective construction of deep, overlapped pile systems to tight tolerances in extremely difficult ground conditions. This paper summarizes critical design considerations for secant pile shoring systems, detailing recent advances in installation procedures and verification techniques that allow secant piles to be used for an expanding range of project conditions. Technically- and commercially-viable secant pile shoring designs require that stringent drilling tolerances be achieved in order to successfully provide combined structural support and groundwater cutoff systems, particularly for unreinforced circular secant pile shafts acting in ring compression. Modern drill rigs and tooling can advance fully cased shafts in geotechnical conditions which range from cohesionless soils below the groundwater table to hard rock, within a single drillhole. Down-hole instrumentation provides verification that tolerance requirements are met and allow secant pile shoring to be used at sites previously considered unacceptably risky. In California, secant pile shoring systems are being used for excavation depths of over 100 ft (30 m) on projects with challenging site conditions. Two case studies are presented detailing severe geotechnical conditions and excavation depths which represent the regional state of practice in secant piled excavation support. These projects provide real world examples of the design, construction and construction verification techniques that permit secant pile shoring to be used in more demanding geotechnical conditions and to greater depths than ever before.
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