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A foundation (or, more commonly, foundations) form the lowest part of an architectural
structure and are generally either shallow or deep. They and their construction are also sometimes
called basework especially in the context of larger structures.

The nature of the load requiring support.

Ground conditions.
The presence of water.
Sensitivity to noise and vibration.
Proximity to other structures.
Project timeframes.




called footings, are usually embedded
about a metre or so into soil. One
common type is the spread footing which
consists of strips or pads of concrete (or
other materials) which extend below
the frost line and transfer the weight from
walls and columns to the soil or bedrock.
Another common type of shallow
foundation where the weight of the
building is transferred to the soil through
a concrete slab placed at the surface.
Slab-on-grade foundations can be
reinforced mat slabs, which range from
25 cm to several meters thick, depending
on the size of the building, or posttensioned slabs, which are typically at
least 20 cm for houses, and thicker for
heavier structures.

A deep foundation is used to transfer loads from a structure above ground through upper weak
strata of soil to a more competent one at depth, beyond which shallow foundations become
both impractical and uneconomic. The most common form of deep foundation is provided by
using piles which can be categorized as either replacement or displacement.

The types of deep foundations in general use are as follows:

1) Basements
2) Buoyancy rafts (hollow box foundations)
3) Caissons
4) Cylinders
5) Shaft foundations
6) Piles

These are hollow substructures designed to provide working or storage space below ground
level. The structural design is governed by their functional requirements rather than from
considerations of the most efficient method of resisting external earth and hydrostatic
pressures. They are constructed in place in open excavations.


Buoyancy rafts are hollow substructures designed to provide a buoyant or semi-buoyant
substructure beneath which the net loading on the soil is reduced to the desired low
intensity. Buoyancy rafts can be designed to be sunk as caissons, they can also be
constructed in place in open excavations.

Caissons are hollow substructures designed to be constructed on or near the surface and
then sunk as a single unit to their required level.

Cylinders are small single-cell caissons.

Shaft foundations are constructed within deep excavations supported by
lining constructed in place and subsequently filled with concrete or other prefabricated load-bearing units.


Pile foundations are relatively long and slender members constructed by driving preformed
units to the desired founding level, or by driving or drilling-in tubes to the required depth
the tubes being filled with concrete before or during withdrawal or by drilling unlined or
wholly or partly lined boreholes which are then filled with concrete.


Piles can by classified on the basis of following characteristics:
1. Mechanism of Load Transfer
2. Method of Installation
3. Type of Materials

Classification of Piles on the basis of load transfer

1. End/Point Bearing Piles:
If a bedrock or rocklike material is present at a site within a reasonable depth, piles can be
extended to the rock surface. In this case, the ultimate bearing capacity of the pile depends
entirely on the underlying material; thus the piles are called end or point bearing piles. In
most of these cases the necessary length of the pile can be fairly well established.
Instead of bedrock, if a fairly compact and hard stratum of soil is encountered at a
reasonable depth, piles can be extended a few meters into the hard stratum.
2. Friction Piles:
In these types of piles, the load on pile is resisted mainly by skin/friction resistance along
the side of the pile (pile shaft). Pure friction piles tend to be quite long, since the loadcarrying. Capacity is a function of the shaft area in contact with the soil. In cohesion less
soils, such as sands of medium to low density, friction piles are often used to increase the
density and thus the shear strength. When no layer of rock or rocklike material is present at
a reasonable depth at a site, point/end bearing piles become very long and uneconomical.
For this type of subsoil condition, piles ate driven through the softer material to specified

Classification of Piles according to the Method of Installation of piles

1. Driven or displacement piles
They are usually pre-formed before being driven, jacked, screwed or hammered into
ground. This category consists of driven piles of steel or precast concrete and piles formed
by driving tubes or shells which are fitted with a driving shoe. The tubes or shells which are
filled with concrete after driving. Also included in this category are piles formed by placing
concrete as the driven piles are withdrawn.

2. Bored or Replacement piles

They require a hole to be first bored into which the pile is then formed usually of reinforced
concrete. The shaft (bore) may be eased or uncased depending upon type of soil.

Classification of pile with respect to type of material

Piles are usually made of timber, concrete or steel. Timber can be used for the manufacture
of temporary piles and when the wood is available at an economical price. Concrete is used
for the manufacture of pre-cast concrete piles, cast in place and pre-stressed concrete
piles, while steel piles are used for permanent or temporary works.


1.Timber piles
Used from earliest record time and still used for permanent works in regions where timber is
plentiful. Timber is most suitable for long cohesion piling and piling beneath embankments.
The timber should be in a good condition and should not have been attacked by insects.
For timber piles of length less than 14 meters, the diameter of the tip should be greater than
150 mm. If the length is greater than 18 meters a tip with a diameter of 125 mm is
acceptable. It is essential that the timber is driven in the right direction and should not be
driven into firm ground. As this can easily damage the pile. Keeping the timber below the
ground water level will protect the timber against decay and putrefaction. To protect and
strengthen the tip of the pile, timber piles can be provided with toe cover. Pressure
creosoting is the usual method of protecting timber piles.

2.Concrete piles
Concrete piles can be divided to pre-cast and cast in place concrete piles:
(I) Pre- cast concrete Piles or Pre-fabricated concrete piles
It is formed and reinforced in a high-quality controlled concrete, Usually used of square
triangle, circle or octagonal section, they are produced in short length in one meter intervals
between 3 and 13 meters. They are pre-caste so that they can be easily connected
together in order to reach to the required length. This will not decrease the design load
capacity. Reinforcement is necessary within the pile to help withstand both handling and
driving stresses. Pre stressed concrete piles are also used and are becoming more popular
than the ordinary pre cast as less reinforcement is required.

(II) Cast in place Concrete piles

Cast in place concrete piles are the most type commonly used for foundations due to the
great diversity available for pouring concrete and the introduction of the pile into the soil.
Driving and drilling piles are two types of cast in place concrete piles; however, the
implementation of these piles in place may be accompanied by some problems such as
arching, squeezing and segregation.

3. Steel piles
Made of sectors in the form of H, X or of thick pipes (see fig. 6). They are suitable for
handling and driving in long lengths. Their relatively small cross-sectional area combined
with their high strength makes penetration easier in firm soil. They can be easily cut off or
joined by welding. If the pile is driven into a soil with low pH value, then there is a risk of
corrosion, but risk of corrosion is not as great as one might think. Although tar coating or
catholic protection can be employed in permanent works.

The installation process and method of installations are equally important factors as of the
design process of pile foundations. Pile installation methods are installation by pile hammer
and boring by mechanical auger.
1. Pile Boring
2. Reinforcement cage lowering
3. Flushing
4. Pile concreting
In order to avoid damages to the piles, during design, installation Methods and installation
equipment should be carefully selected.
If installation is to be carried out using pile-hammer, then the following factors should be
taken in to consideration:

the size and the weight of the pile

the driving resistance which has to be overcome to achieve the design penetration
the available space and head room on the site
the availability of cranes and
the noise restrictions which may be in force in the locality.

Pile driving methods (displacement piles)

Methods of pile driving can be categorized as follows:

o Dropping weight
o Explosion
o Vibration
o Jacking (restricted to micro-pilling)
o Jetting

Drop hammers
A hammer with approximately the weight of the pile is raised a suitable height in a guide
and released to strike the pile head. This is a simple form of hammer used in conjunction
with light frames and test piling, where it may be uneconomical to bring a steam boiler or
compressor on to a site to drive very limited number of piles.
There are two main types of drop hammers:

Single-acting steam or compressed-air hammers

Double-acting pile hammers

1. Single-acting steam or compressed-air comprise a massive weight in the form of a

cylinder. Steam or compressed air admitted to the cylinder raises it up the fixed piston rod.
At the top of the stroke, or at a lesser height which can be controlled by the operator, the
steam is cut off and the cylinder falls freely on the pile helmet.

2. Double-acting pile hammers can be driven by steam or compressed air. A pilling frame is
not required with this type of hammer which can be attached to the top of the pile by legguides, the pile being guided by a timber framework. When used with a pile frame, back
guides are bolted to the hammer to engage with leaders, and only short leg-guides are
used to prevent the hammer from moving relatively to the top of the pile. Double-acting
hammers are used mainly for sheet pile driving.

Figure1: Pile driving using hammer

Pile driving by vibrating

Vibratory hammers are usually electrically powered or hydraulically powered and consists
of contra-rotating eccentric masses within a housing attaching to the pile head. The
amplitude of the vibration is sufficient to break down the skin friction on the sides of the pile.
Vibratory methods are best suited to sandy or gravelly soil.
Jetting: to aid the penetration of piles in to sand or sandy gravel, water jetting may be
employed. However, the method has very limited effect in firm to stiff clays or any soil
containing much coarse gravel, cobbles, or boulders.

Under reaming

A special feature of auger bored piles which is sometimes used to enable to exploit the
bearing capacity of suitable strata by providing an enlarged base. The soil has to be
capable of standing open unsupported to employ this technique. Stiff and to hard clays,
such as the London clay, are ideal. In its closed position, the under reaming tool is fitted
inside the straight section of a pile shaft, and then expanded at the bottom of the pile to
produce the under ream shown in fig. 3.Normally, after installation and before concrete is
casted, a man carrying cage is lowered and the shaft and the under ream of the pile is

Figure 3: a)hydraulic rotary drilling equipment c)undreaming tool open position


(I) After getting the permission from the engineer, the reinforcement cage will be gently lifted
and lowered by crane/manually into the bored hole
(II) If the reinforcement cage is very long i.e. not possible to handle in one lift, the cage will
be lifted one by one and spot welded at the joints and then lowered inside the bored hole
(III) It is to be checked whether the reinforcement cage has reached up to bottom of the pile
by measuring from the top of the cage to the ground level.

After cage lowering, 200 mm diameter tremie pipes in suitable lengths are to be lowered in
the hole. The operation is done by lowering one tremie pipe after another and connecting
them threading to maintain water tightness throughout its length till the gap between the pile
base and Tremie is between 75 100 mm.

Ater flushing is completed, tremie head should be removed and funnel should be attached to
the tremie pipe
ii. The slump of the concrete will be maintained at 150 mm to 200 mm
iii. Concreting operation will be carried out using the 200 mm diameter tremie pipes
iv. Lifting and lowering is repeated keeping sufficient concrete in funnel all the time. As the
concreting proceeds the tremie pipe are to be removed one by one, taking care that the
tremie pipe has sufficient embedment in the concrete until the whole pipe is concreted
v. The concreting of pile is to be done up to minimum of 300 mm above the cut off level to
get good and sound concrete at cut off levelf


1. First of all soil test is conducted to know the soil index properties like moisture content,
composition of soil etc.
2. Then through boring depth of the hard strata is known
3. After the above tests, accurate positioning of the pile is determined

4. Soil is excavated using Auger of Diameter 24 inches to drill through a depth of 28


5. A
temporary steel
casing is inserted using rig machines
6. Dewatering of the bore is done using a pump

7. Reinforcement cage of required dimension is inserted in the bore hole

8. A tremie pipe is held in the bore hole by the crane and concrete is poured in it through a funnel.

9. In this manner, bore is filled from the bottom to the top & ensures all the impurities & impure
concrete part comes above that could be broken off later
10. Tremie pipe is removed and it is left for drying for about 24 hrs
11. The upper portion of the pile i.e Pile head (impure concrete 1 -1.5m) is removed leaving the
reinforcement behind.
12. A thick reinforcement case is made above the piles joining all of them together & a concrete slab
is casted i.e Pile cap (which is the base of the colunm)

INSTALLATION METHODS: The concrete filled steel pipes were 31 to 61 cm in diameter

with wall thickness ranging from 0.95 to 1.3cm. The piles were driven closed ended
by welding a steel cone or flat plate onto the pile tip prior to driving. Once the pile
was driven to the required depth, The pile was filled with concrete.