Impact of Pile Head Rigidity on the Response of Piled Raft in Sand Under Pseudo-Static Loading


The 3D finite element simulations are carried out to study the impact of different pile head connection conditions, i.e., rigid and hinged connection on the response of piled rafts in sand subjected to pseudo-static horizontal loading. The time-acceleration histories of Assam (2014), Bhuj (2001), Sikkim (2011) and Uttarkashi (1991) earthquakes are considered to calculate the horizontal pseudo-static loads. Analyses results confirm that pile head connection rigidity greatly influences the behavior of piled raft in many aspects. The horizontal stiffness of piled raft is found to decrease as the rigid pile head connection changes to hinged one. Piles in a piled raft foundation is found to carry about 52–75% of the pseudo-static horizontal load for rigid connection and 32–48% for hinged connection. The horizontal deflection of pile is found maximum at the pile head and becomes negligible along the depth of pile for both cases. For rigidly connected piles, the maximum bending moment occurs at the pile head, whereas piles with hinged connection show zero bending moment at top and maximum value at a certain depth from pile head.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.

Fig. 1
Fig. 2
Fig. 3
Fig. 4
Fig. 5
Fig. 6
Fig. 7
Fig. 8
Fig. 9
Fig. 10
Fig. 11
Fig. 12
Fig. 13
Fig. 14
Fig. 15
Fig. 16
Fig. 17
Fig. 18
Fig. 19


  1. 1.

    Horikoshi K, Matsumoto T, Hashizume Y, Watanabe T, Fukuyama H (2003) Performance of piled raft foundations subjected to static horizontal loads. Int J Phys Model Geotech 3(2):37–50

    Article  Google Scholar 

  2. 2.

    Matsumoto T, Fukumura K, Kitiyodom P, Horikoshi K, Oki A (2004) Experimental and analytical study on behavior of model piled rafts in sand subjected to horizontal and moment loading. Int J Phys Model Geotech 4(3):1–19

    Article  Google Scholar 

  3. 3.

    Matsumoto T, Nemoto H, Mikami H, Yaegashi K, Arai T, Kitiyodom P (2010) Load tests of piled raft models with different pile head connection conditions and their analyses. Soils Found 50(1):63–81

    Article  Google Scholar 

  4. 4.

    IS: SP-34 (1987) Handbook on concrete reinforcement and detailing. Bureau of Indian Standard, New Delhi

    Google Scholar 

  5. 5.

    Burland JB, Broms BB, de Mello VFB (1977) Behavior of foundations and structures. In: Proceedings of 9th international conference on soil mechanics, Tokyo, vol 2, pp 495–546

  6. 6.

    Poulos HG, Davis EH (1980) Pile foundation analysis and design. Wiley, New York

    Google Scholar 

  7. 7.

    Randolph MF (1994) Design methods for pile groups and piled rafts. In: Proceedings of 13th ICSMFE, New Delhi, vol 5, pp 61–82

  8. 8.

    Clancy P, Randolph MF (1993) An approximate analysis procedure for piled raft foundations. Int J Numer Anal Methods Geomech 17:849–869

    Article  Google Scholar 

  9. 9.

    Ta LD, Small JC (1996) Analysis of piled raft systems in layered soils. Int J Numer Anal Methods Geomech 20:57–72

    Article  Google Scholar 

  10. 10.

    Katzenbach R, Arslan U, Moorman C, Reul O (1998) Piled raft foundation: interactions between piles and raft. Darmstadt Geotech 4:279–296

    Google Scholar 

  11. 11.

    Poulos HG (2001) Piled-raft foundation: design and applications. Geotechnique 51(2):95–113

    Article  Google Scholar 

  12. 12.

    Horikoshi K, Randolph MF (1998) A contribution to optimum design of piled rafts. Geotechnique 48(3):301–317

    Article  Google Scholar 

  13. 13.

    Clancy P, Randolph MF (1996) Simple design tools for piled raft foundations. Geotechnique 46(2):313–328

    Article  Google Scholar 

  14. 14.

    Sanctis LD, Mandolini A (2006) Bearing capacity of piled raft on soft clay soil. J Geotechn Geoenviron Eng 132(12):1600–1610

    Article  Google Scholar 

  15. 15.

    Katzenbach K, Choudhury D (2013) ISSMGE combined pile-raft foundation guideline. Deep foundations, International Society for Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering, London, pp 1–28

  16. 16.

    Horikoshi K, Matsumoto T, Hashizume Y, Watanabe T, Fukuyama H (2003) Performance of piled raft foundations subjected to dynamic loading. Int J Phys Model Geotech 3(2):51–62

    Article  Google Scholar 

  17. 17.

    Matsumoto T, Fukumura K, Horikoshi K, Oki A (2004) Shaking table tests on model piled rafts in sand considering influence of superstructures. Int J Phys Model Geotech 4(3):21–38

    Article  Google Scholar 

  18. 18.

    Phanikanth VS, Choudhury D (2014) Single piles in cohesionless soils under lateral loads using elastic continuum approach. Indian Geotech J 44(3):225–233

    Article  Google Scholar 

  19. 19.

    Zheng C, Ding X, Sun Y (2015) Vertical vibration of a pipe pile in viscoelastic soil considering the three-dimensional wave effect of soil. Int J Geomech 16(1):04015037(1-10)

    Google Scholar 

  20. 20.

    Kumar A, Choudhury D, Katzenbach R (2015) Behaviour of combined pile-raft foundation (CPRF) under static and pseudo-static conditions using PLAXIS3D. In: Proceedings of 6th international conference on earthquake geotechnical engineering (6ICEGE), Christchurch, New Zealand, paper ID-140

  21. 21.

    Liu Y, Wang X, Zhang M (2015) Lateral vibration of pile groups partially embedded in layered saturated soils. Int J Geomech 15(4):04014063(1-11)

    Article  Google Scholar 

  22. 22.

    Kumar A, Choudhury D (2017) Load sharing mechanism of combined pile-raft foundation (CPRF) under seismic loads. Geotechn Eng J Southeast Asian Geotech Soc (SEAGS) Assoc Geotech Soc Southeast Asia (AGSSEA) 48(3):95–101

    Google Scholar 

  23. 23.

    Kumar A, Patil M, Choudhury D (2017) Soil-structure interaction in a combined pile-raft foundation—a case study. Proc Inst Civ Eng—Geotech Eng 170(2):117–128

    Article  Google Scholar 

  24. 24.

    Kumar A, Choudhury D, Katzenbach R (2016) Effect of earthquake on combined pile-raft foundation. Int J Geomech 16(5):04016013

    Article  Google Scholar 

  25. 25.

    Tabesh A, Poulos HG (2001) Pseudostatic approach for seismic analysis of single piles. J Geotech Geoenviron Eng 127(9):757–765

    Article  Google Scholar 

  26. 26.

    Liyanapathirana DS, Poulos HG (2005) Pseudostatic approach for seismic analysis of piles in liquefying soil. J Geotech Geoenviron Eng 131(12):1480–1487

    Article  Google Scholar 

  27. 27.

    Plaxis AE (2015) Netherland user manual, PLAXIS 3D

  28. 28.

    Elwakil AZ, Azzam WR (2016) Experimental and numerical study on piled raft system. Alex Eng J 55:547–560

    Article  Google Scholar 

  29. 29.

    Alnuaim AM, El Naggar MH, El Naggar H (2016) Numerical investigation of the performance of micropiled rafts in sand. Comput Geotech 77:91–105

    Article  Google Scholar 

  30. 30.

    Mali S, Singh B (2018) Behavior of large piled-raft foundation on clay soil. Ocean Eng 149:205–216

    Article  Google Scholar 

  31. 31.

    Halder P, Kumar S, Manna B, Sharma KG (2019) Influence of joint orientation on the behavior of dam foundation resting on jointed rock mass under earthquake loading condition. Int J Geotech Earthq Eng 10(1):1–16

    Article  Google Scholar 

  32. 32.

Download references

Author information



Corresponding author

Correspondence to Prasun Halder.

Additional information

Publisher's Note

Springer Nature remains neutral with regard to jurisdictional claims in published maps and institutional affiliations.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this article

Halder, P., Manna, B. & Sur, A. Impact of Pile Head Rigidity on the Response of Piled Raft in Sand Under Pseudo-Static Loading. Indian Geotech J 50, 810–824 (2020).

Download citation


  • Piled raft
  • Connection rigidity
  • Pseudo-static load
  • Horizontal deflection
  • Bending moment
  • Finite element