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Pile Design to Eurocode 7 The design of piles is covered in Section 7 of EN 1997-1, with the values of the partial factors

taken from Annex A. Section 7 Mainly considers the behaviour of pile foundations under axial loads. The use of static load tests is covered as an important design method. A new concept is the use of correlation factors for deriving the characteristic compressive and tensile resistances of piles either from static load tests or from ground test results. Limit states Clause 7.2(1)P gives eleven limit states which need to be considered, seven are ULS covering geotechnical or structural failures, and four are SLS, covering excessive settlements. Actions The most frequent actions to be considered are permanent and variable loads from the supported structures. Axial (normally vertical) and transverse (normally horizontal) loadings are usually considered separately. Actions due to ground movements also need to be considered. These are very specific to piles. Typical ground movements are; Vertical settlements causing downdrag i.e. negative shaft friction, Upwards soil displacements causing heave, Horizontal soil displacements causing transverse loadings. Pile load tests The pile design methods accepted by Eurocode 7 are all based, directly or indirectly, on the results of static pile load tests. This is obviously the case when the pile design is based on pile load tests on the specific site.

In any case, pile load tests are required where there is great uncertainty about their behaviour in a particular situation see Clause 7.5.

Clause 7.5 gives a recommended test procedure and interpretation for static pile load tests.

Design of Axially Loaded Piles

This is described in Clause 7.6, which is the core of Section 7. Limit states

Clause 7.6.1.1(1)P gives the limit states which have to be checked explicitly. The first three are ULS;

The bearing resistance failure of a single pile,

The bearing resistance failure of a whole foundation,

Collapse of a supported structure.

The last is the SLS of the supported structure caused by displacements which exceed an agreed limiting value.

N.B. The ULS bearing resistance failure of a single pile and of a whole pile foundation corresponds to the traditional bearing capacity design.

We will focus on this ULS.

Partial factors for pile design

The sets of partial factors are given in the table below.

CL507 Pile Design to EC7

CL507 Pile Design to EC7

Compressive ground resistance (ULS) ULS is checked using the following inequality;

Ground test results

Fc ,d Rc,d
where Fc,d is the design axial compression load, and Rc,d is the design value of the compressive ground resistance. The compressive ground resistance can be determined from static load tests, ground test results (e.g. shear strength tests), or dynamic load tests. Static load tests The trial piles must be of the same type and must be founded in the same stratum. Interpretation must take into account the variability of the ground and the variability of the pile installation. From the measured compressive resistances Rc,m, the characteristic value Rc,k is obtained from;

This is based on the model pile procedure, which considers the results of one or more ground test profiles, as follows;

Calculate the compressive resistance Rc,cal by applying the prediction method to each profile separately, using the following equation;

Rc ,cal = Rb ,cal + Rs ,cal

This gives the predicted resistance of the pile if it was exactly at the location of the ground test profile.

The characteristic values Rc,k , Rb,k and Rs,k are obtained from;

Rc ,k = Min{( Rc ,cal ) mean / 3 ; ( Rc ,cal ) min / 4 }

where 3 and 4 are correlation factors related to the number of test profiles. The recommended values are given in Appendix A, Table A.10.

The model pile procedure can be used with DA-1 and DA-2, but is not applicable to DA-3 since this involves applying partial factors to the characteristic values of ground strength parameters.

Rc,k = Min{( Rc ,m ) mean / 1 ; ( Rc ,m ) min / 2 }


where 1 and 2 are correlation factors related to the number of piles tested. The recommended values are given in Appendix A, Table A.9. The design compressive resistance Rc,d is obtained by applying the partial factors given in Tables A.6, A.7 and A.8 to the characteristic resistance Rc,k;

Rc ,d = Rc,k t

or Rc,d = Rb,k b + Rs ,k s

From the tables it can be seen that partial factors can be applied separately to the shaft and base resistance.

CL507 Pile Design to EC7

CL507 Pile Design to EC7

EN 1997-1 Design Examples These design examples are taken from Frank et al. Example 1 Design of a pile in compression from static load test results The objective is to show how the results of static load tests should be interpreted following Eurocode 7. The objective is to determine the number of driven piles of length 55 m required to carry the applied loads. Only ULSs in persistent and transient situations and accidental situations are considered. The permanent vertical compressive load is 31 MN and the vertical accidental load is 16 MN. It is assumed that there is no need to check any group effects or to check the SLS. A typical soil profile consists of 20 30 m of very soft clay, and muddy sands, and sands and gravels at the base level. The results of four static load tests on driven piles with different embedment lengths are available, as shown below.

Example 2 Design of a pile in compression from laboratory test results

This example presents the ULS design of a single bored pile in clay (pile diameter B = 0.8 m) using the undrained shear strength cu.

The characteristic values of the loads are a permanent load of 600 kN and a variable load of 300 kN.

The design aims to check the required length of the pile, which is expected to be 18.5 m.

The ground investigation consisted of three profiles of undrained shear strength cu, as shown below.

CL507 Pile Design to EC7

CL507 Pile Design to EC7