Full-Scale Lateral Load Tests to Determine Load-Displacement Characteristics of Driven Piles in Soft Clay
This paper presents the details and preliminary results of full-scale lateral load tests on driven piles in soft Bangkok clay. Steel pipe piles with a diameter of 0.25 m and a depth of 12.5 m were instrumented with strain gauges at various depths. Load tests were performed to large pile displacements. Based on the framework of elastic beam on foundation, the strain gauge outputs were employed to determine pile bending moments, deflections and soil reactions. These calculated pile deflections were validated by means of the results of inclinometer measurements during the course of testing. The experimental pile responses were compared to the numerical predictions of the computer program LPILE. It was found that the numerical model predicted unrealistically stiff load-deflection behavior. The reason was likely the use of Matlock \( p - y \) model for soft clay which significantly overestimated the experimental \( p - y \) relationships of Bangkok clay particularly near the ground surface.
The authors would like to acknowledge the financial support from the Thailand Research Fund (TRF) and SEAFCO Public Company Limited. We would like to also thank all members of the Geotechnical Engineering Laboratory, Mahidol University for their assistance during the course of field load tests.
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