Monitoring and analysis of the bending behaviour of discrete piles used to stabilise a railway embankment

Smethurst, J.A. and Powrie, W. (2007) Monitoring and analysis of the bending behaviour of discrete piles used to stabilise a railway embankment. Géotechnique, 57, (8), 663-677. (doi:10.1680/geot.2007.57.8.663).


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Discrete piles are used to stabilise infrastructure slopes, especially where there is insufficient additional land to allow construction of large toe berms or regrading of the slope. Compared with more conventional structures such as retaining walls, there are little field data on how discrete piles typically bend and displace under slope loading. This paper presents the results from monitoring a number of discrete piles used to stabilise a railway embankment at Hildenborough, Kent. Bending deflections deduced from strain gauges are compared with the displacements and rotations measured by inclinometer tubes cast into the piles. Four years after pile installation, the piles were bending downslope over their lower halves, with little bending measured in the upper sections. Regrading of the rockfill piling platform shortly after pile construction caused some of the pile loading, with further loading caused by the continued tendency for slope movement. Analysis of the piles using a simple elastic analysis gives bending moments and displacements close to those measured.

Item Type: Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI): doi:10.1680/geot.2007.57.8.663
ISSNs: 0016-8505 (print)
Keywords: embankments, field instrumentation, ground movements, monitoring, piles, slopes
Subjects: T Technology > TF Railroad engineering and operation
Divisions : University Structure - Pre August 2011 > School of Civil Engineering and the Environment
Faculty of Engineering and the Environment > Civil, Maritime and Environmental Engineering and Science > Infrastructure Research Group
ePrint ID: 52645
Accepted Date and Publication Date:
1 October 2007Published
Date Deposited: 11 Jul 2008
Last Modified: 31 Mar 2016 12:31
Discrete piles for infrastructure earth slope stabilisation
Funded by: EPSRC (GR/S30696/01)
1 November 2003 to 30 April 2007

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