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1. What is Foundation?
Foundation is the lowermost structure in any building, it will transfer the load from
superstructure to the soil (substructure).There would have been no need of foundation if the
soil is good in shear. The column would have been sufficient. But column punches (settles
or goes inside soil) because of a small perimeter. So, the foundation is provided just to
increase perimeter so that load is distributed over a large area.

In other words, Foundation is the lowest part of the building or the civil structure that
is in direct contact with the soil which transfers loads from the structure to the soil safely

2. What is Footing?
Footings are an important part of foundation construction. They are typically made of
concrete with rebar reinforcement that has been poured into an excavated trench. The
purpose of footings is to support the foundation and prevent settling. Footings are especially
important in areas with troublesome soils.
3. Difference between Foundation and Footing

Footing Foundation

Foundation is a structure which

The footing is a formation which is in transfers its gravity loads to earth
contact with the ground. from superstructure.

Footing can be analogized with the Foundation can be compared with

feet of the leg. legs.

The footing is a type of shallow Foundation can be shallow and

foundation. deep.

Footing includes slab, rebar which types include piles, caissons,
are fabricated of brickwork, masonry footings, piers, the lateral supports,
or concrete. and anchors.

Foundation is an extensive
support because it gives support to
Footing reinforces support to an a group of footings as an entire
individual column. building

A number of footings repose on a Foundation is the support that bears

foundation. all kinds of loadings.

A footing is under the foundation

wall. Foundations are the basement walls.

Foundation is in direct contact with

Footing transmits loads directly to the soil and transmits it to the
the soil. ground.

All footings are foundations. Not all foundations are footings.

4. Types of Footing
It is a component of shallow foundation which distributes the weight of a load
bearing wall across the area of the ground. It is also known as wall footing.

As the name suggests, a spread is given under the base of the foundation so
that the load of the structure is distributed on wide area of the soil in such a way that
the safe bearing capacity of the soil is not exceeded.

It is square, circular or individually rectangular slab of uniform thickness,
provided under each column.


The main purpose of using stepped footing is to keep the metal columns
away from direct contact with soil to save them from corrosive effect. They are used
to carry the load of metal columns and transmit this load to the below ground.
When two or more columns are supported by a footing it is called combined
footing. This footing may be of rectangular or trapezoidal in plan. Combined footing is
provided under following situations.

 When columns are close to each other and their individual footings overlap.
 Soil having low bearing capacity and requires more area under individual footing.
 The column end is situated near the property line and the footing cannot be extended.

In such footing, the outer and inner column is connected by a strap beam,
does not transfer any load to the soil. The individual footing areas of the columns are
so arranged that the C.G of the combined loads of the two columns pass through the
C.G of the two footing areas. Once this criterion is achieved, the pressure
distribution below each individual footing will be uniform.

This foundation covers the entire area under the structure. This foundation
has only RCC slab covering the whole area or slab and beam together. Mat
foundation is adopted when heavy structures are to be constructed on soft made-up
ground or marshy sites with uncertain behavior. Mat foundation is also known as raft

The footings having sloping top or side faces are known as sloped footings.
This type of footing is useful in the construction of formwork.
5. What is Soil Bearing Capacity?
Bearing capacity is the capacity of soil to support the loads applied to the ground.
The bearing capacity of soil is the maximum average contact pressure between the
foundation and the soil which should not produce shear failure in the soil.

Soil behaves in a complex manner when loaded so, it is important to know the
bearing capacity of soils.

6. What is a sheet pile?

Sheet piles are sections of sheet materials with interlocking edges that are driven
into the ground to provide earth retention and excavation support. Sheet piles are most
commonly made of steel, but can also be formed of timber or reinforced concrete.

7. What is a bored pile/driven pile?

Bored piles are reinforced concrete elements cast into drilled holes, used to transfer
heavy loads to a deeper competent soil or rock stratum. Bored piles, executed in a low-
vibrating continuous drilling method, can be used for foundations and pit securing as well as
for slope stabilization. Secant pile walls (separated, tangent or overlapped) are seen as
relatively stiff and low-deforming systems. The execution can be done in almost all soils due
to the use of adapted drilling tools.