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Engineering Geology 101 (2008) 226235

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Engineering Geology
j o u r n a l h o m e p a g e : w w w. e l s ev i e r. c o m / l o c a t e / e n g g e o

Design of shallow foundations under tensile loading for transmission line towers:
An overview
M.P. Pacheco a,1, F.A.B. Danziger b,, C. Pereira Pinto c,2
a
University of the State of Rio de Janeiro, R. Ingls de Souza 334, Jardim Botnico, RJ, 22460-110, Brazil
b
Federal University of Rio de Janeiro, R. Vice-Gov. Rubens Berardo 65, apt 304, Bl 2, Gvea, RJ, 22451-070, Brazil
c
Federal Center of Technological Education, CEFET/RJ, and PCE Eng., R. Santa Clara 248, apt 401, Copacabana, RJ, 22041-010, Brazil

A R T I C L E I N F O A B S T R A C T

Article history: Tensioned foundations are common in civil engineering applications such as transmission towers, harbors,
Received 1 February 2008 offshore structures, basement slabs under pressure, industrial equipment, etc. Procedures for the design of
Received in revised form 31 May 2008 tensioned foundations are discussed in this paper, including specic recommendations for more common
Accepted 10 June 2008
transmission tower foundations. Starting from a distinction between shallow and deep modes of failure, the
Available online 24 June 2008
paper presents the most common failure mechanisms for shallow failure in tension, including procedures for
calculation of foundation tensile capacity under vertical and inclined loading. Emphasis is given to the
Keywords:
Tensile capacity
inuence of the strength of the compacted backll compared to the strength of the natural soil, including
Shallow foundation presentation of results of full-scale loading tests.
Failure modes 2008 Published by Elsevier B.V.
Inclined loading

1. Introduction Glasgow (e.g., Sutherland, 1965; Davie and Sutherland, 1977, 1978;
Stewart, 1985; Sutherland, 1988), Ontario Hydro Research Division
This paper results from three decades of research development at (e.g., Adams and Hayes, 1967; Adams and Klym, 1972; Ismael and Klym,
the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro since 1970s, based on many full- 1978, 1979), Duke University (e.g., Esquivel-Daz, 1967; Ali, 1968;
scale tensile tests in different types of transmission tower foundations Bhatnagar, 1969; Vesic, 1969), Kyoto University (e.g., Matsuo, 1967,
in different soil formations throughout Brazil (Barata et al., 1978, 1979; 1968), University of Texas (e.g., Das and Seeley, 1975a,b; Das, 1975,
Danziger, 1983; Barata et al., 1985; Pereira Pinto, 1985; Rufer dos 1978, 1980; Das et al., 1985; Das and Puri, 1989), University of Sydney
Santos, 1985; Danziger et al., 1989; Rufer dos Santos, 1999; Garcia, and University of Western Ontario (e.g., Rowe, 1978; Rowe and Booker,
2005; Danziger et al., 2006b). The practical recommendations are based 1979a,b, 1980; Rowe and Davis, 1982a,b), Federal University of Rio de
on the Authors' experience in design and construction of foundations Janeiro (e.g., Barata et al.,1978, 1979; Danziger, 1983; Barata et al.,1985;
for extra-high voltage transmission lines in the last 30 years covering Pereira Pinto, 1985; Rufer dos Santos, 1985; Danziger et al., 1989;
the entire country, including very long transmission systems in the Rufer and Mahler, 1989; Santos, 1999; Garcia, 2005; Danziger et al.,
Amazon region, and the Itaipu 750 kV transmission system. 2006b), Cornell University (e.g., Kulhawy et al., 1979; Kulhawy, 1985;
The paper published by Balla (1961) is widely recognized as the Trautmann and Kulhawy, 1988; Kulhawy and Stewart, 1994; Phoon et
pioneer work on tensioned foundations (e.g., Meyerhof and Adams, al., 2003a), Kuwait University (e.g., Ismael and Klym, 1979; Ismael and
1968; Vesic, 1969). A number of researches followed in several Al-Sanad, 1986; Ismael, 1989), Danish Engineering Academy (e.g.,
institutions around the world, e.g., at University of Grenoble (e.g., Ovesen, 1981), University of Liverpool (e.g., Dickin and Leung, 1983,
Ribier, 1962; Montel, 1963; Martin, 1963, 1966; Biarez and Barraud, 1985; Dickin, 1988), Delft University of Technology (e.g., Vermeer and
1968; Porcheron and Martin, 1968; Trn-V-Nhim, 1971; Martin, Sutjiadi, 1985), University of Wales (e.g., Murray and Geddes, 1987),
1973; Batmanabane, 1973; Martin and Cochard, 1973), Nova Scotia Sarajevo Civil Eng. Faculty (e.g., Sarac, 1989), Concordia University and
Technical College (e.g., Macdonald, 1963; Spence, 1965; Wiseman, Union College (e.g., Ghaly et al., 1991a,b,c; Hanna and Ghaly, 1992;
1966; Meyerhof and Adams, 1968; Meyerhof, 1973a,b), University of Ghaly and Hanna, 1992, 1994a,b), Norwegian Geotechnical Institute
(e.g., Andersen et al., 1992, 1993; Dyvik et al., 1993), Indian Institute of
Science (e.g., Rao and Kumar, 1994), University of Massachusetts (e.g.,
Corresponding author. Tel.: +55 21 2562 7391. Lutenegger and Miller, 1994), Hiroshima University and Tokyo Inst. of
E-mail addresses: marcus_pacheco@terra.com.br (M.P. Pacheco),
danziger@coc.ufrj.br (F.A.B. Danziger), claudio.pereirapinto@gmail.com (C.P. Pinto).
Technology (e.g., Gurung et al., 1998), National University of Singapore
1
Tel.: +55 21 3205 4699. (e.g., Phoon et al., 2003a), Mie University and University of Tokyo (e.g.,
2
Tel.: +55 21 3231 7470. Sakai and Tanaka, 2007), among others.

0013-7952/$ see front matter 2008 Published by Elsevier B.V.


doi:10.1016/j.enggeo.2008.06.002
M.P. Pacheco et al. / Engineering Geology 101 (2008) 226235 227

Fig. 1. Most common types of towers: (a) self-supported tower; (b) guyed tower.

A number of those theories have been used to compare the considerations of limit equilibrium and settlements are important.
predicted uplift capacity with full-scale tensile testing in unsaturated Further discussion on prediction of displacements of tensioned
soils by Danziger (1983), Pereira Pinto (1985) and Rufer dos Santos foundations is provided by e.g., Rowe and Booker (1980), Trautmann
(1999). These studies have indicated generally that the theories and Kulhawy (1988). Finite element analyses are also useful to predict
developed at the University of Grenoble match reasonably well the displacements of tensioned foundations, although more accurate 3-D
test results for different types of soils, failure modes, load inclinations, simulations may be time consuming for design purposes. In this paper,
and embedment depths with proper adjustments to account for the the design recommendations are restricted to limit equilibrium
effect of inhomogeneity provided by the compacted backll. There- analyses.
fore, the theoretical predictions of tensioned foundation capacity
discussed in this paper are based mainly on the comprehensive work 2. Tensile loads and failure modes
developed at the University of Grenoble. It is worth mentioning that
the research developed at the University of Grenoble is not well Tensioned foundations can be subjected to permanent as well as
known by the geotechnical community, probably because most papers transient loading. In case of transmission lines, permanent loading is
have been published in journals and conferences related to transmis- caused by angle in the line and anchor loading in the towers. Angle
sion lines (mostly related to electrical engineering). load occurs when there is change in direction of the transmission line
In tensile foundations, shear strains are more pronounced than at the tower. Anchor load occurs on one side of the rst and the last
volumetric strains in contributing to the displacements. In founda- tower of a row of towers (named end-of-line or anchor towers),
tions under compressive loads, especially in weak soils, volumetric resulting in unbalanced forces at the sides of the tower produced by
strains are predominant in contributing to the settlements. As a result, different cable tension and construction load. Transient loading occurs
tensioned foundations with well compacted backll produce gener- due to wind load (usually the dominant design load) and sudden
ally smaller displacements compared to foundations under the same mechanical failures of the conductors.
compressive load in the same type of soil. Therefore, the design of Self-supported transmission towers (Fig. 1a) can apply alternate
foundations under tensile loads is conceived under limit equilibrium nearly concentric compression/tension loads (Fig. 2a and b) or eccentric
criteria in most cases, in contrast to compressed foundations where loads (Fig. 2c) to the foundation. Guyed towers (Fig. 1b) transmit

Fig. 2. Common shallow foundations for self-supported towers: (a) steel grillage; (b) footing with inclined pedestal; (c) footing with vertical pedestal.
228 M.P. Pacheco et al. / Engineering Geology 101 (2008) 226235

Fig. 3. Case of very high foundation pedestals: (a) sketch of an anchored base; (b) general view of the crossing of a river at the Amazon region during a ooded period (Danziger et al.,
2006b).

concentric orthogonal tension loads to the inclined guy foundation, in (about 30 to 35 to vertical), the effect of load inclination should be
addition to compressive eccentric and horizontal loads to the central accounted for in foundation design, as the ultimate tensile capacity is
mast foundation. For the typical design and inclination of a tower guy dependent on the load/plate inclination.
M.P. Pacheco et al. / Engineering Geology 101 (2008) 226235 229

The foundation design loads are usually provided by the tower


manufacturer. The foundation loads are calculated under different
load hypotheses. In self-supported towers (Fig. 1a), the design loads
are given by superposition of the vertical (tension/compression) and
two mutually perpendicular horizontal loads that act transversely and
along the transmission line, providing a resultant load nearly
coincident with the leg inclination. The foundation designer takes
into account the most unfavorable load hypothesis on each foundation
element, making a distinction between permanent and transient
loading. Safety factors of three for permanent loads and two for
transient loads, with respect to the theoretical ultimate tensile
capacity, are generally recommended for tensioned foundations. Fig. 5. Determination of the critical depth, stiff soils (Martin, 1966, 1973).
Intermediate values may be used for simultaneous permanent and
transient loading. A discussion on global and partial factors of safety,
as well as on a probabilistic approach for transmission line founda-
tions is provided by Phoon et al. (2003b). foundation pedestals need to be high, like e.g., in cases of signicant
Steel grillage foundations (Fig. 2a) or footings with inclined seasonal variation in the ooding level of rivers or inundated areas
pedestals (Fig. 2b) with a foundation depth D and width B for self- crossed by transmission lines (Danziger et al., 2006b). High pedestals
supported transmission towers are subjected to a resultant tension (T) are much easier to build vertically rather than inclined. The over-
or compression (C) load that is approximately in the same direction as turning moments generated in such cases may be very high, and the
the tower leg, transmitting thus mostly concentric loading to the corresponding footing dimensions would be very large. The use of
foundation. Moreover, the usual slope of a typical self-supported prestressed anchors at the foundation corners is generally cost-
tower leg is small ( b 10). Thus, for practical purposes, the tensile effective to absorb high overturning moments, as illustrated in Fig. 3.
capacity of steel grillage foundations or footings with inclined Prestressed anchors may represent a cost-effective solution in case of
pedestals for self-supported towers is calculated for vertical loading very high uplift loads, even with inclined pedestals, providing a
only, neglecting the secondary effects of load inclination and minor signicant reduction of footing width and/or depth.
eccentricities. In contrast, self-supported towers on footings with a Vertical or nearly vertical tensioned plates are divided into shallow
vertical pedestal (Fig. 2c) introduce eccentricities (e) in two orthogo- and deep modes of failure (e.g., Martin, 1966; Biarez and Barraud,
nal directions, parallel and perpendicular to the direction of the 1968; Meyerhof and Adams, 1968; Vesic, 1969), as shown in Fig. 4a for
transmission line. The behavior of tensioned foundations under stiff soils and Fig. 4b for weak soils. In shallow mode, the failure
eccentric and oblique load was studied by e.g., Matsuo (1967), Vesic surface reaches the ground level and all applied tensile load is resisted
(1969), Meyerhof (1973a). There are situations in practice where by the plate. In deep mode, the tensile load is shared by plate and
shaft, where the failure surface (or plastied zone) around the plate
does not reach the ground level. The ultimate tensile load Qult
obtained as a function of the plate depth D, in shallow and deep
modes, is depicted qualitatively in Fig. 5. The dashed and solid lines
represent the shallow and deep modes respectively (Martin, 1966;
Biarez and Barraud, 1968; Porcheron and Martin, 1968; Martin, 1973).
The two curves intersect at the critical depth (Dc), where the failure
mode changes from shallow to deep or vice-versa. To know whether
the failure will be in shallow or deep mode, one should perform the
calculations for both modes, taking the one corresponding to the
smaller tensile resistance. However, full-scale load tests indicate that
the critical depth is no less than two to three times the diameter of a
circular plate or the width of a square plate. Therefore, for typical
depths and dimensions of ordinary shallow foundations used in
transmission towers, the failure would be in shallow mode. Thus, the
behavior of foundations under tensile loading discussed in this paper
is limited to the shallow mode.

Fig. 4. Shallow and deep failure modes: (a) stiff soils ( b 0); a.1: shallow mode; a.2: deep
mode; (b) weak soils ( N 0); b.1: shallow mode; b.2: limit situation between shallow
and deep modes; b.3: deep mode (Martin, 1966; Biarez and Barraud, 1968; Porcheron Fig. 6. Observed (dashed line) and simplied (full line) failure surfaces in stiff soils
and Martin, 1968; Martin, 1973). (Martin, 1966, 1973).
230 M.P. Pacheco et al. / Engineering Geology 101 (2008) 226235

Fig. 7. Uplift capacity in soft clays: (a) vertical excavation; (b) sloped excavation.

The shapes of the failure surface in shallow and deep modes are model tests in homogeneous soils in the laboratory and have also been
dictated by the type of soil in which the foundation is placed (e.g., conrmed by full-scale tests. The shallow mode for weak soils such as
Martin, 1973) and by the inclination of the tensile load (e.g., Martin saturated soft clays (case iii) is generally of minor importance in
and Cochard, 1973). The simplied shallow mode shown in Fig. 6 was practice, since in this case the weak soil above the foundation is almost
developed for homogeneous stiff soils under vertical loading. The always replaced by more resistant, pre-selected compacted backlls as
actual curvilinear failure surface obtained in the tensile tests is in Fig. 7. In situations such as in Fig. 7a, the undrained tensile capacity of
replaced by an equivalent simplied conical surface holding a slope , the plate is estimated simply as cupbD, where cu = undrained shear
as indicated in Figs. 4 and 6. The shape of the failure surface (and strength of the clay, pb = perimeter of the plate and D = plate depth. In
hence slope ) depends on the type of soil and friction angle , as situations such as in Fig. 7b, the tensile capacity is estimated either as in
shown in Fig. 4. For shallow plates, Martin (1966, 1973), Biarez and case (i) or (ii).
Barrraud (1968) and Porcheron and Martin (1968) conceived three Similarly to conventional bearing capacity theories, the Grenoble
cases corresponding to distinct failure modes, depending on the soil models do not make any allowance for shear dilatancy in cases of
type: dense sands and stiff clays. In situations where these aspects are to be
taken into account, one may rely on nite elements analysis. A simple
i. granular soils (from loose to dense), where the failure surface
manner to stress such a dependency consists in performing nite
develops outwards with an average inclination = ;
element analyses by using a code within which a MohrCoulomb
ii. stiff clayey soils with N 15, where the failure surface develops
failure criterion allows for dilatancy.
outwards with an average inclination = / 4; and
The failure modes indicated in Figs. 4 and 6 are applicable to
iii. soft clayey soils with b 15, where the failure surface develops
homogeneous soils. Stewart (1985), Sutherland (1988) and Sakai and
inwards with an average inclination = tan 1(0.2).
Tanaka (2007) investigated the tensile capacity of layered soils. To
The sign convention used here is that b 0 for a failure surface that account for the inhomogeneity introduced by the compacted backll,
propagates outwards from the plate and N 0 when this surface the tensile capacity is controlled by the weaker of the two materials:
propagates inwards. The above failure modes have been observed in backll or surrounding natural soil. If the backll is weaker than the
natural soil, the failure takes place at the vertical interface ( = 0), see
also Matsuo (1967). If the natural soil is weaker, the failure takes place
within the natural soil, with the equivalent conical failure surface
propagating outwards from the plate ( = / 4 or = ), see also
Matsuo (1967).
The effect of load inclination (with respect to the vertical
direction) of shallow foundations in homogeneous soils is shown in

Fig. 8. Failure modes for inclined load in stiff soils: (a) shallow mode; a.1: vertical load;
a.2: inclined load; a.3: horizontal load; (b) deep mode; b.1: vertical load; b.2: inclined
load; b.3: horizontal load (Martin and Cochard, 1973). Fig. 9. Tensile tests on inclined grillages: inuence of the compacted backll.
M.P. Pacheco et al. / Engineering Geology 101 (2008) 226235 231

Fig. 8a (Martin and Cochard, 1973). However, depending on the load Table 1
inclination and the relative resistance of the compacted backll Footing dimensions

with respect to the natural soil, the actual failure mode is likely to Footing Deptha (m) Base width (m) Base thickness (m) Pedestal width (m)
depart from the idealized modes shown in Fig. 8a and produce F1 3.0 3.0 0.65 0.60
distinct failure angles L and R (at the left and right edges of the F2 3.0 3.0 0.65 0.60
plate), as in Fig. 9. The failure modes for shallow inclined plates at F3 2.0 2.0 0.65 0.60
F4 2.5 2.5 0.65 0.60
moderate load inclination ( b 30) are similar to the ones for
a
horizontal plates under uplift loading (Martin, 1973). For steeper With respect to the base of the footing.
inclinations ( N 30), the failure mode changes as the angle
increases, both in shallow (Fig. 8a) and deep modes of failure
(Fig. 8b). In all models discussed below, it is assumed that the load
3.2. Steeply inclined plates
is acting normal to the plate.
The following applies to steeply inclined ( N 30) shallow
3. Tensile capacity equations in homogeneous soils Grenoble
rectangular plates under concentric load acting normal to the plate:
model (Martin, 1966; Trn-v-nhim, 1971; Martin and Cochard,
1973; Martin, 1973)  
Qult BL cNc 0:5BN q0 Nq W cos 2
3.1. Moderately inclined plates ( b 30) or horizontal plates ( = 0)
where B is the width and L is the length of a rectangular plate. The
As with most methods available in the literature, the uplift capacity tensile capacity factors Nc, N and Nq are given by the set of formulae
Qult of plates installed at shallow depth can be expressed by tensile shown in Appendix B.
capacity factors, similarly to bearing capacity formulae, as: For load inclinations close to the limit = 30, it is advisable to
calculate the tensile capacity separately by Eqs. (1) and (2) and take
 
D D   the smaller value. The tensile capacity factors applicable to Eqs. (1)
Qult pb cMc M M qo Mq Sb D W cos 1
cos cos and (2) are easily obtained by spread sheets or programmable hand
calculators.

where D = foundation depth, pb = plate perimeter, Sb = plate area, 4. Test results


c = soil cohesion, = unit weight of the soil, W = foundation self-
weight, and qo = external surcharge acting at the ground level. Mc, Martin (1966, 1973), and Martin and Cochard (1973) presented a
(M + M) and Mq are dimensionless tensile capacity factors depend- wide collection of tensile tests comparing quite successfully theore-
ing on the soil type and friction angle , calculated by the set tical predictions obtained by the Grenoble models with laboratory and
D
of formulae shown in Appendix A. The term cMc cos M M eld results. The calculated results assumed generally the case of
qo Mq  in Eq. (1) accounts for the average shear stress acting on the homogeneous soils where the soil parameters were those given by the
failure surface. Integration of the shear stresses provides in general strength of compacted soils in reduced scale tests in the laboratory or
the dominant term in the foundation tensile capacity. In the absence by the strength of natural soils in case of full-scale tests in the eld,
of external surcharge at the soil surface (the most common situation with no assessment of the strength of the compacted backll. The
in practice), the term qoMq vanishes. The foundation self-weight W is effect of the strength of the compacted backll is accounted for in the
negligible in the case of steel grillage foundations. The term SbD test results presented next.
accounts for the weight of soil above the plate. Progressive failure and lack of ductility in stiff soils are not taken
into account in the model. In situations where these aspects are to be
taken into account, good engineering judgement to select the proper
shear strength parameters is needed. Nevertheless, non-consideration
of such factors is on the safe side for practical applications.
The rst series of tests reported herein have been performed in the
city of Adrianpolis, Rio de Janeiro State, in a residual soil from
weathered gneiss. The footings were built in a mature residual clayey
soil (see also Vargas, 1953; Deere and Patton, 1971; Barata et al., 1978).
The measured uplift capacities of four full-scale uplift tests on square
footings to failure, Qult, measured, are compared with the Grenoble
model predictions, Qult, predicted (Eq. (1)) in Fig. 10, see also Table 1.
The full symbols are for = / 4 (failure within natural soil) and the
open symbols are for = 0 (failure at natural soilbackll interface).
Barata et al. (1978, 1979) and Danziger (1983) provide a thorough
interpretation of eld and laboratory investigations at this site. The
NSPT values were in the range 1530. Data from triaxial CU tests
provided average c = 28.9 kPa and = 25.5. The average unit weight
of the compacted soil is 18.7 kN/m3. It should be pointed out that the
Brazilian SPT delivers an energy about 67.3 to 72.9% (e.g., Dcourt et
al., 1989; Belincanta and Cintra, 1998) up to 83% (Cavalcante, 2002;
Cavalcante et al., 2004; Danziger et al., 2006a) of the theoretical free
fall energy of 474 J to the rod stem, i.e., the Brazilian NSPT values
referred to in this paper should be multiplied by a correction factor
in the range 1.121.38 in order to obtain N60, the number of blows
Fig. 10. Uplift test results on footings in unsaturated residual soil from gneiss (full corresponding to the reference energy of 60% of 474 J (ISSMFE,
symbols: = / 4; open symbols: = 0). 1989).
232 M.P. Pacheco et al. / Engineering Geology 101 (2008) 226235

Fig. 11. Cracks at the ground level at failure; uplift test on (a) footing F-2 ( = 0); (b) footing F-3 ( = / 4).

Fig. 11a shows the cracks mobilized during the tensile test on footing Fig. 12 shows the results of eight full-scale tensile tests on
F-2. The dotted lines indicate the horizontal projection of the rectangular 1.35 m 0.50 m steel grillages for guyed towers embedded
3.0 m 3.0 m footing base and represent also the excavation limits. in porous unsaturated clay with NSPT values in the range of 23 (Barata
The 0.4 m 0.4 m wire mesh used to track the propagation of surface et al., 1985; Pereira Pinto, 1985). The embedment depths are given in
cracks is also indicated in the gure. In this test, the compacted backll Table 2. The load inclination was = 33.5 applied orthogonally to the
did not match the higher strength of the natural residual soil and cracks grillage in all tests. Each foundation was loaded gradually to failure and
developed mostly within the compacted soil limited by the interface then unloaded. Then a side excavation was open and the foundation
between the backll and the natural soil ( = 0). The same pattern was reloaded to observe the corresponding failure modes. The backll
observed in the test of footing F-1. In contrast, Fig. 11b shows the cracks resistance was higher than the resistance of the natural soil in all tests.
formed at the end of the test on footing F-3, where the strengths of the For calculation purposes the strength parameters in all direct shear
natural and compacted soils are comparable. The failure surface in this tests have been estimated for displacement ratios d / Db of 5% and 10%,
test progressed markedly beyond the excavation limits ( = / 4). The where d is the shear displacement and Db the width of the shear box.
same pattern has been observed in the test of footing F-4. The agreement The average strength parameters are c = 11 kPa; = 23.3 (d / Db = 5%)
between test results and predicted values supports these observations. and c = 20.8 kPa, = 24.8 (d / Db = 10%). The average unit weight of the
The second series of tests have been performed in the surroundings of natural porous clay is p = 14.64 kN/m3, and the average unit weight of
the city of Itapeva, close to the border of the Cenozoic sediment in Southern the compacted backll is c = 18.24 kN/m3. Pereira Pinto (1985)
Brazil, which covers most of the States of So Paulo and Paran. This provides a thorough interpretation of eld and laboratory investiga-
sediment has a thickness generally no greater than 10 m, and has been tions at this site.
subjected to an intense process of laterization. The soils of the Cenozoic Theoretical predictions calculated by Grenoble model are
sediment may be presented as clay or sand, depending on its origin. The rst compared to the tensile failure load obtained in the eld tests in
meters of the prole are almost always porous and unsaturated (Giachetti et Fig. 12. The full symbols refer to d / Db = 5% and the open symbols to
al., 1993). d / Db = 10%. The lower failure loads (grillages G-1 and G-3) are in
good agreement with the predicted values for d / Db = 5%. The
higher failure loads (other grillages) are in good agreement with the
values predicted by the Grenoble model for d / Db = 10%. The more
resistant backll has contributed to form two distinct actual failure
angles L (left) b R (right) at the edges of the grillage as shown in
Fig. 9. The angle L was close to = / 4 (conforming to Grenoble
model), whereas R was signicantly larger than L in all tests. Thus
good engineering judgment is required to select the strength
parameters to be used in the design of inclined foundations in practice,
due to the inuence of the compacted backll. For safe design, however,
it is recommended to choose the strength parameters c, from the
smaller values corresponding either to the natural soil or to the
compacted backll. As with vertical tensioned foundations, proper
backll compaction is essential for adequate foundation performance.

Table 2
Grillage depthsa

Grillage Depth (m) Grillage Depth (m)


G1 1.28 G5 1.40
G2 1.46 G6 1.31
G3 1.32 G7 1.45
G4 1.46 G8 1.33
Fig. 12. Uplift test results on inclined grillages in porous unsaturated clay (full symbols:
a
d / D = 5%; open symbols: d / D = 10%). With respect to the middle of the inclined excavation.
M.P. Pacheco et al. / Engineering Geology 101 (2008) 226235 233

Fig. 13. Failure process in a grillage during uplift testing: (a) beginning at the upper foundation edge; (b) and (c) cracks progressing towards the ground level; (d) general view of failure.

Laboratory and in situ tensile tests show that the failure process initiates Mc, (M + M) and Mq are dimensionless tensile capacity factors
at the upper foundation edge. This has been demonstrated by Pereira depending on the friction angle and calculated by the following set
Pinto (1985) for in situ tests in unsaturated tropical soils (Fig. 13) and by of formulae:
e.g., Sakai and Tanaka (2007) for laboratory tests in sands.
 
tan D 1
5. Conclusions Mc Mco 1
2 R cos

The main types of failure modes of shallow foundations under tensile  


tan f tan
loading for transmission line towers are reviewed in this paper. Mco cos  1
tan H tan 
Conceptual distinctions between shallow and deep modes of failure are
also reviewed, including possible modes of shallow failure according to  
f  cos n sin cosm
the applied load inclination. The basic theoretical framework follows the tan
H 4 2 cos nsin cosm
models developed at the University of Grenoble, which allow broad
applicability to different types of soils, failure modes, load inclinations,
embedment depths and good agreement with laboratory and full-scale 
m
tests on different types of foundations in a wide variety of soils. As with 4 2
conventional bearing capacity theories, the most relevant model limita-
sin n sin  sin m
tion refers to its applicability to homogeneous soils. Proper adjustments of
Grenoble models have been discussed to account for the effect of  
  tan D 1
inhomogeneity provided by the compacted backll. The failure modes of M M Mo Mo 1
3 R cos
footings under vertical tensile loading in a stiff unsaturated residual soil
from weathered gneiss showing either about the same or higher strength sin cos  2
than the backll strength have been discussed. Similarly, the failure mode M o M o
2 cos2
of inclined steel grillages in a porous unsaturated Cenozoic sediment less
 
resistant than the backll has also been discussed. In both cases, proper tan D 1
Mq Mqo 1
observation of the corresponding failure surfaces enabled modications 2 R cos
into Grenoble models to provide reasonable predictions for practical
applications. Mq o M co tan  tan

Appendix A
is the load inclination to the vertical (which is zero for horizontal
Tensile capacity factors for shallow plates at moderate load plates) and R is the radius of a circular plate or the equivalent radius of a
inclination ( b 30) or horizontal plates ( = 0): Grenoble model (Martin rectangular plate with dimensions BL, calculated as R=(B+L)/, except in
1966, 1973; Martin and Cochard, 1973) the case of saturated clays, where R=(B+L)/4. D is the plate depth, pb the
  plate perimeter, Sb the plate area, c the soil cohesion, the unit weight of
D D   the soil, W the self-weight of the foundation, and qo the external surcharge
Qult pb cMc M M qo Mq Sb D W cos
cos cos acting at the ground level.
234 M.P. Pacheco et al. / Engineering Geology 101 (2008) 226235

Appendix B References

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