Characterization of Concrete Pile Groups with 2-D Seismic Waveform Tomography

  • Khiem T. TranEmail author
  • Farrokh (Frank) Jalinoos
  • Anil K. Agrawal


Currently, about 28,000 bridges over water in the United States are classified as having missing key foundation information such as number and distribution of piles and pile lengths. The as-built drawings of buried concrete piles or drilled shafts are critical in assessing the hydraulic scour vulnerability of bridges. This paper presents an application of seismic waveform tomography for characterization of shaft groups. The capability of an existing 2-D Gauss–Newton seismic waveform tomography method was investigated on challenging subsurface conditions for groups of drilled shafts with various lengths within each group. The method was applied to field experimental datasets collected at the National Geotechnical Experimental Site (NGES) at College Station, Texas. The site contains two groups of four and five drilled shafts with various lengths from 10.4 to 24.1 m. Seismic wave fields were measured on the ground surface at the edges of the two pile groups, and analyzed by the 2-D waveform tomography method. Seismic results showed that waveform analysis was able to well characterize the pile groups. Individual drilled shafts and soil between them are distinguished, and lengths were also generally predicted.


Unknown foundation 2-D waveform tomography Pile group National geotechnical experimental site (NGES) 



This material is based upon work supported by Federal Highway Administration under contract number DTFH61-14-D-00010. Any opinions, findings and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the authors(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Federal Highway Administration. The authors would like to thank Professors Briaud and Everett of the Texas A&M University for graduate field assistance and logistic support for the conduct of field work at the NGES test site.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Khiem T. Tran
    • 1
    Email author
  • Farrokh (Frank) Jalinoos
    • 2
  • Anil K. Agrawal
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Civil and Coastal EngineeringUniversity of FloridaGainesvilleUSA
  2. 2.Federal Highway Administration, Office of Infrastructures R&DMcLeanUSA
  3. 3.Department of Civil EngineeringCity College of the City University of New YorkNew YorkUSA

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