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Civil Engineering Department Meghnad Saha Institute of Technology (WBUT)


Due to increasing economic development, rapid industrialization and decreasing availability of land for construction in thickly populated countries like India, scope for extending construction in horizontal direction is becoming increasingly lesser resulting in construction of high-rise building with increasing number of floors. In such cases if raft foundations are proposed it is generally observed allowable bearing capacity of such rafts are quite high so that such foundation can withstand the applied loads due to high-rise buildings to a great extent without causing shear failure but the major problem of such foundation is that the total settlement below the foundation at different locations will be very high beyond permissible limits. In the context of above a new foundation system is being adopted for such high-rise buildings, in which raft foundation is being provided over the base of the whole building and some piles are being provided with raft at designed specified location below the raft. The use of the piles is intended to reduce the total and differential settlement of raft to a considerable degree causing large scale economy without compromising the safety and performance of the foundation. Such a foundation makes use of both the raft and piles and are referred as piled-raft. This paper has outlined the necessity, concept, and favourable & unfavourable circumstances of piled raft foundation. _______________________________________
* Student, 4th Year, B. Tech in Civil Engineering Mobile: 09830713676 e-mail- 1. Introduction

In the design of foundations for large buildings on deep deposit of cohesive soils it is generally seen that if raft foundation be chosen the foundation will have sufficient factor of safety against shear failure but corresponding settlement will be very high to permit. In such cases pile foundations are generally selected causing very large cost for such foundations. The settlements are successfully controlled in such foundations. However in the late, it has been recognized if few number of piles are installed at suitable locations below the raft foundation for such structures, the resultant settlement under such structures will be much smaller and will be within permissible limits compared to that below the raft without provision of piles. Use of raft in conjunction with some piles will be costlier than in case where only raft is used if possible but much less than the case when only piles are used. As a result in the past decades there has been increasing recognition to use some piles with raft to reduce the total and differential settlement of raft leading to considerable economy without compromising the safety and performance of the foundation structure system. Such a foundation system is called piled-raft. One of the most important buildings constructed with such system is for the foundation system of the worlds tallest building the Burj Dubai (Poulos, 2008). Similar foundations are also being adopted in India for twelve storey buildings in Chennai (Balakumar and Ilamparuthi, 2007, Bajad and Sahu, 2009). The adoption of piled-raft foundation for highrise buildings is also very common in European cities. Thus it seems on the context of increasing construction of buildings of large heights in metropolis in India and other countries, piled-raft foundation will be increasingly adopted as a most economic safe foundation system. In this paper an attempt has been made to describe the concept of load transfer mechanism for piled -raft foundation from superstructure to the foundation.
2. Foundation concept

In piled raft foundations utilised piled support for control of settlement with piles providing most of the stiffness at service load and the raft provides additional capacity at ultimate loading( Poulos, 2008).Therefore such a system considers not only the capacity of pile elements and raft elements but also there combined capacity and interaction under service load. Randolph (1994) has defined clearly three different design philosophies with respect to piled rafts: The conventional approach, in which the piles are designed as a group to carry the major part of the load , while making some allowance for the contribution of the raft , primarily to ultimate load capacity. Creep piling in which the piles are designed to operate at a working load, at which significant creep starts to occur, typically 7080% of the ultimate load capacity.. Sufficient piles are introduced to reduce the net contact pressure between the raft and the soil.

Control of differential settlement, in which the piles are located strategically in order to reduce the differential settlement, rather than to substantially reduce the overall average settlement. In addition, there is a more extreme version of creep piling, in which the full load capacity of the piles is utilized, i.e. some or all of the piles operate at 100% of their ultimate load capacity. This gives rise to the concept of using piles primarily as settlement reducers, while recognizing that they also contribute to increasing the ultimate load capacity of the entire foundation system. Russo and Viggiani (1998) have introduced two classes of pile- raft foundations: 1. Small piled- rafts, where the primary reason for adding the piles is to increase the factor of safety (this typically involves rafts with widths between 5 and 15 m); 2. Large piled- raft, whose bearing is sufficient to carry the applied load with a reasonably safety margin, but piles are required to reduce settlement or differential settlement. In such cases, the width of the raft is large in comparison with the length of the piles (typically, the width of the raft exceeds the length of the piles). These two categories broadly mirror the conventional and creep piling philosophies considered by Randolph (1994). Design philosophies for piled- raft foundations are illustrated conceptually in Fig. 1.1. Curve 0 shows the behaviour of the raft alone, which settles excessively at the design load. The loadsettlement behaviour of piled-raft for conventional approach is represented by curve 1 in which the piles are designed as a group to carry the major part of the load and which may be largely linear at the design load. Creep piling design approach represented by curve 2. In this case raft carries load because the piles are less in number and operated at lower factor of safety. The strategy of using piles as settlement reducer is represented by curve 3where the full capacities of the piles at the design load are utilized. The load-settlement curve at the design load shows nonlinear behavior. But the overall foundation system has an adequate margin of safety and settlement is within allowable limits. Therefore, the design depicted by Curve 3 and is likely to be considerably more economical than the designs depicted by Curve 1 and 2.

3. Load sharing

A piled-raft foundation consists of three elements- the raft, the piles and the subsoil. The load is taken partly by the contact pressure between the raft and the soil and partly by the piles. At failure, the bearing capacity of an unpiled raft QR may be evaluated by the conventional bearing capacity theory as expressed in the following form in the case of a raft resting at the surface of a clay deposit. QR = ( CFcNccu ) Where, CFc Adjustment factor for shape, size and inclination of load, cu cohesion, Nc bearing capacity factor and A area of the raft. Experiments carried out on model square rafts on clay soils suggest the bearing capacity of an unpiled raft may be defined at the load corresponding to settlement W=10%B (Cooke 1986). These findings have been recently confirmed by centrifuge tests (Conte et al. 2003), as well as field tests (Borel, 2001). Collapse of the pile group may occur either by failure of the individual piles or as failure of the overall block of soil containing piles (Terzaghi & Peck, 1967). The axial capacity Q P for individual pile failure occurs, is generally evaluated by:

Where Qi,p is the bearing capacity of the ith pile and is the group efficiency factor depending on pile layout and type and soil type (Kezdi, 1957). When considering the bearing capacity QBF by failure of the overall block of soil, it is generally assumed that the full shear strength of the soil is mobilized on the vertical surfaces of the block defined by the perimeter of the block, as well as the bearing pressure at the base of the block. A suitable factor of safety should be provided against both

modes of failure, taking into account that the settlement needed to mobilize the base capacity of the block is in the order of 5% to 10% of its width (Cooke, 1986). De Mello (1969) summarized data for pile groups up to 9 in clay soils; the block mode of failure occurs for spacing smaller than 2 to 3 pile diameters. In clayey soil the group efficiency is generally lower than unity. Cooke (1986) has also reported similar results. Taking into account all the above evidence Poulos (2000) suggested that the vertical bearing capacity QPR of piled rafts is the smaller of the following values: Ultimate capacity QBF of the block containing the piles, plus that of the portion of the raft outside the periphery of the pile group; Sum of the ultimate loads of the raft Q R and of all the piles QP in the system: QPR = QR + QP The installation of the piles, however, may affect the soil properties and consequently modify the performance of the raft in comparison with that of the unpiled raft. Moreover, it is becoming more and more evident that the behaviour of the piles belonging to a piled raft is affected not only by the interaction among piles but also by the surcharge exerted by the raft. As a consequence Liu et al. (1994) and Borel (2001a) suggested modifying the upper equation as follows: QPR = R QR + P QP Where, R and P are coefficients affecting the failure load of the raft and the pile group when combined in a piled- raft. Cooke (1986) summarized the results of a broad laboratory investigation including load tests on model rafts, pile groups and piled-rafts, founded on remoulded London clay. The tested piles had a ratio L/d = 24 and 48 and were arranged in 3, 5, 7 and 9 groups. Some results are shown in Figure 1.2 for the case L/d = 48. The curves reported in figure 1.2 represent the theoretical failure load of a pile group, assuming either block failure or pile group failure, as a function of the pile spacing. Below a critical value s crit/d of the spacing ratio ( scrit/d increases from about 2.5 for 3 piles to about 3.5 for 9 piles, bold line in figure 1.2 ) the failure load Q BF corresponding to block failure is the smallest one and block failure should thus occur; at s/d > scrit/d, the failure load of pile group QP should apply.

4. Favourable and unfavourable circumstances for Piled-Rafts

The most effective application of piled-rafts occurs when the raft can provide adequate load capacity, but the settlement and/or differential settlements of the raft alone exceed the allowable values. Poulos (2001) has examined a number of idealized soil profiles, and found that the following situations may be favourable: Soil profiles consisting of relatively stiff clays Soil profiles consisting of relatively dense sands. In both circumstances, the raft can provide a significant proportion of the required load capacity and stiffness, with the piles acting to boost the performance of the foundation, rather than providing the major means of support. Conversely, there are some situations which are unfavourable, including: Soil profiles containing soft clays near the surface Soil profiles containing loose sands near the surface Soil profiles which contain soft compressible layers at relatively shallow depths Soil profiles which are likely to undergo consolidation settlements

Soil profiles which are likely to undergo swelling movements due to external causes. In the first two cases, the raft may not be able to provide significant load capacity and stiffness, while in third case, long-term settlement of the compressible underlying layers may reduce the contribution of the raft to the long-term stiffness of the foundation. The latter two cases should be treated with considerable caution. Consolidation settlement ( such as those due to dewatering or shrinking of an active clay soil) may result in a loss of contact between the raft and the soil, thus increasing the load on the piles, and leading to increased settlement of the foundation system. In the case of swelling soils, substantial additional tensile forces may be induced in the piles because of the action of the swelling soil on the raft. Theoretical studies of these latter situations have been described by Poulos (1993) and Sinha and Poulos (1999).
5. Conclusion

This paper has outlined the necessity, concept, and favourable and unfavourable circumstances of piled raft foundation. Further discussions have been made on load sharing between piles and raft and also on the cost effectiveness of the piled raft foundation over the conventional pile foundation.
6. Acknowledgement

Hereby I would like to express my gratitude to Prof. Dr. B.C.Chattopadhyay, Geotechnical Advisor, Kolkata, for his constant guidance and inspiration for the preparation of this paper.

7. References

1. Bajad, S.P. and Sahu, R.B (2009), Optimum design of piled raft in soft clay A model study. Proce. IGC Conf., Guntuy, page 131-134. 2. Balakumar, V. and Ilamparuthi, K. (2007), Performance monitoring and numerical stimulation of a 12 storey building. Indian Geotechnical Journal 37(2), page 94-115. 3. Conte, G., Mandolini, A. & Randolph, M.F. (2003), Centrifuge Modelling to investigate the performance of piled rafts. Proc. Of the 4th Int. Seminar on Deep Foundations on Bored and Auger Piles, Millipress, Rotterdam, page 359- 366. 4. Cooke, R.W. (1986), Piled raft foundation on stiff clays, a contribution to design philosophy. Geotechnique, 36(2), page 169203. 5. Poulos, H.(2008), The piled raft foundation for the Burj Dubai design and performance IGS - Ferroco, Terzaghi Oretion 2008, Indore.

6. Randolph, M.F. (1994), Design methods for piled roofs and piled rafts. Proce. 13th Int. Conf. on SMFE, New Delhi, page 61-82. 7. Russo, G., and Viggiani, C. (1998), Factor controlling Soil-Structure interaction for piled rafts. Int. Conf. on Soil-Structure Interaction in Urban Civil Engineering, Ed. Katzenback, R. and Arslan, V., Darmstadt. 8. Terzaghi, K., and Peck, R.B.(1967), Soil Mechanics in Engineering practice. 2nd Ed., John Weley and Sons, New York.