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foundations based on a Winkler model

ARTICLE in SOIL DYNAMICS AND EARTHQUAKE ENGINEERING JULY 2003

Impact Factor: 1.22 DOI: 10.1016/S0267-7261(03)00034-4

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2 AUTHORS, INCLUDING:

M.Hesahm El Naggar

The University of Western Ontarioprofessor a

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Retrieved on: 06 February 2016

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based on a Winkler model

Nii Allotey, M. Hesham El Naggar*

Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, Geotechnical Research Centre,

The University of Western Ontario, London, Ont., Canada N6A 5B9

Accepted 6 January 2003

Abstract

Analytical equations for the moment rotation response of a rigid foundation on a Winkler soil model are presented. An equation is derived

for the uplift-yield condition and is combined with equations for uplift- and yield-only conditions to enable the definition of the entire static

moment rotation response. The results obtained from the developed model show that the inverse of the factor of safety, x; has a significant

effect on the moment rotation curve. The value of x 0:5 not only determines whether uplift or yield occurs first but also defines the

condition of the maximum moment rotation response of the footing. A Winkler model is developed based on the derived equations and is

used to analyze the TRISEE experiments. The computed moment rotation response agrees well with the experimental results when the

subgrade modulus is estimated using the unload reload stiffness from static plate load deformation tests. A comparison with the

recommended NEHRP guidelines based on the FEMA 273/274 documents shows that the choice of value of the effective shear modulus

significantly affected the comparison.

q 2003 Elsevier Science Ltd. All rights reserved.

Keywords: Subgrade modulus; Foundation uplift; Soil yield; Momentrotation; Unloadreload stiffness; Winkler model; Bearing capacity; Backbone curve;

Seismic

1. Introduction

The foundation rocking behavior could greatly contribute to the response of the supported structure to seismic

loading, and in some cases it may become the governing

factor when choosing a retrofitting scheme [1]. In the past,

seismic provisions in most codes accounted approximately

for the effects of foundation behavior on the structural

response (usually referred to as soil structure interaction

(SSI) effects) by adjusting the fundamental period and

damping ratio of the structure. The implementation of the

performance-based seismic design approach requires simple

and efficient cyclic load deformation models for different

structural elements [2]. Thus, the simplified approaches

used in older codes to model SSI effects are not appropriate,

and it is necessary to develop foundation models that can

capture the most important characteristics of the foundation

cyclic load deformation behavior. Therefore, new seismic

* Corresponding author. Tel.: 1-519-661-4219; fax: 1-519-661-3942.

E-mail address: naggar@uwo.ca (M. H. El Naggar).

[4] require explicit modeling of foundation elements when

determining both linear and nonlinear responses of

structures.

Foundation rocking contributes significantly to the

seismic response of a foundation for both tall slender

structures and medium-rise buildings [5]. The rocking mode

involves uplift of the foundation at one side and soil

yielding at the other side of the foundation, and generally

results in the permanent settlement of the footing. Many

researchers have investigated the nonlinear foundation

rocking action using rigorous finite element and boundary

element models [6 8]. However, finite element and

boundary element solutions are not efficient for nonlinear

time domain analysis since they require large computational

time and effort, and thus are not practical for regular design

purposes.

The Winkler model is widely used in SSI analysis because

of its simplicity and ability to incorporate different nonlinear

aspects of the behavior at a reduced computational effort

compared to other approaches. The use of the Winkler model

0267-7261/03/$ - see front matter q 2003 Elsevier Science Ltd. All rights reserved.

doi:10.1016/S0267-7261(03)00034-4

368

for both uplift- and yield-only conditions of a rigid

foundation on a Winkler soil model. The equations were

derived in the context of a retaining wall foundation, and as

such, they do not constitute all the necessary equations for the

complete static response of a rigid foundation. Siddharthan et

al. [13,14] assumed that the ultimate moment occurs when

uplift commences after soil yield has occurred. Their

assumption may represent an acceptable approximation for

the ultimate moment capacity of the foundation under certain

conditions but may not be valid under all conditions.

has been extended to dynamic SSI applications by introducing the Beam-on-Nonlinear Winkler Foundation (BNWF)

models [9]. Filiatrault et al. [10] and Chaallal and Ghlamallah

[11] have used Winkler models to account for foundation

flexibility in their numerical analyses to study the effects of

SSI on both the linear and nonlinear responses of various

structures. A schematic for a rigid foundation on a Winkler

soil is shown in Fig. 1.

Bartlett [12] introduced a Winkler approach to model the

cyclic response of footings on clay. It was noted from the

results that foundation uplift occurs before soil yielding

when the static factor of safety (FS) is , 2. However, he

studied the response using a numerical approach and did not

provide any general equations to predict the response under

different footing conditions. The FEMA 273/274 guidelines

[3] for modeling foundations are based mainly on results of

Bartlett [12], which are depicted schematically in Fig. 2.

The figure shows the moment expressions for the two

extreme conditions for the soil underneath the foundation:

the ideal condition of an uplifted rigid footing supported on

elastic soil at only one corner; and the condition in which the

uplifted footing is supported by a fully developed plastic

block as a result of soil yielding. The moment expressions

corresponding to these two extreme conditions are easily

estimated from simple statics.

The backbone curve of the pseudo-static cyclic moment

rotation response forms an important part of the cyclic

response of a footing, and thus, has to be accurately modeled

when analyzing the seismic response of the supported

structure. Analytical solutions for the moment rotation

response of foundations are difficult to derive because of the

complex nonlinear foundation behavior. Therefore, either a

numerical technique is used for the analysis or simplifying

assumptions are introduced. Siddharthan et al. [13] presented

complete analytical solution for the static moment rotation

response of a rigid foundation resting on a Winkler soil

model. The solution by Siddharthan et al. [13] is extended to

provide additional equations in order to completely define

the entire moment rotation response curve. The different

parameters governing the moment rotation response are

examined using the derived equations. The moment

rotation response curves computed using the derived

equations are compared with experimental results found in

the literature. The analytical results are also compared with

code provisions used to estimate the moment rotation

response in order to shed some light on their level of

accuracy.

The following assumptions are made in the derivation

of the state equations: the axial load is constant and acts

at the center of the footing; the moment acts about the

longitudinal axis of the footing and is computed about its

center; and the length of the footing is one unit. Fig. 3

shows a schematic of the assumed stress and displacement

conditions for various footing states. State 1 represents

elastic conditions, state 2 represents the initial foundation

uplift condition (uplift-only), state 3 represents the initial

soil yield condition (yield-only) and state 4 represents the

soil yield and foundation uplift condition. These states

correspond to different segments of the moment rotation

curve shown in Fig. 2 and are considered herein to derive

the foundation moment rotation response curve as

follows.

3.1. Elastic condition

This stress state, represented by segment (1) in Fig. 2, is

widely used in practice for the design of footings.

Considering the kinematics for this state yields (Fig. 3a)

d0 d1x d2x

1a

369

This is

qx qp 2 k v u x 2

B

2

this situation occurs when (from Eq. (1b))

1b

left end of the footing to spring i (in the Winkler model), qx

is the pressure at point x; d0 is the vertical distance between

the footing base center after loading and its original level

(GL) before loading, d1x and d2x are vertical distances given

by qx =kv and x 2 B=Lu; respectively, u the footing

rotation and kv the subgrade modulus. Finally, the initial

stress qp P=B; where P is the axial load applied to the

footing. Summing moments about the center of the footing

gives a linear relation between moment and rotation, i.e.

M

k v B3 u

12

the commencement of foundation uplift with no initiation of

soil yield (point 2 in Fig. 2) occurs when

M2l

PB

6

and

u2l

2P

k v B2

stress at one end of the footing reaches the static bearing

M2u

B2

q 2 qp

6 u

and

u2u

2

q 2 qp

kv B u

4a

2qu

2P

2

k v B k v B2

4b

M2u

qu B2 PB

2

6

6

and

u2u

opposite sides of the footing, it can be easily shown

that soil yielding would occur before foundation uplift

when [12]

q

qp $ u

5

2

3.2. Initial uplift condition

This stress state is represented by segment (3) in the

moment rotation curve shown in Fig. 2. The lower limit of

this segment begins from the point represented by Eq. (3).

Referring to Fig. 3b and considering the kinematics of this

condition, Eq. (6) can be obtained

6a

370

of footing part not in contact with soil (length of

uplift) to the footing width. Substituting into Eq. (6a)

yields

qx kv uB1 2 h 2 x

6b

following equation is obtained

M M2l 1 2h

soil is PB=2. The equation of this segment is given by [13]

s#

"

2P

or

M M2l 3 2 2

k v B2 u

8

"

r#

u2l

M M2l 3 2 2

u

Eqs. (7) and (8) show that the moment, M; is a linear

function of the uplift ratio, h; and a nonlinear function of

yield is initiated when the stress at the extreme edge

reaches the yield value, i.e. before M 3M2l ; which is the

ultimate condition for an infinitely strong soil. This

condition occurs when [13]

M3l 3M2l 2

2P2

3qu

u3l

and

q2u

2Pkv

PB

2P2

2

2

3qu

Eq. (5) shows that soil yield occurs before foundation

uplift when the initial stress is greater than half the ultimate

bearing capacity of the footing. This condition is represented by segment (4) of the moment rotation curve in

Fig. 2 and its lower limit is defined by Eq. (4). Based on the

kinematics of this condition (Fig. 3c)

10a

the footing portion on yielded soil (yielded length) to the

footing width. Substituting into Eq. (10a) gives

qx qu kv uBj 2 x

10b

can be shown that

M M2u 1 2j

11

yielded length. The expression for this segment of the

moment rotation curve is given by [13]

s#

3M2u

M M2u 3 2 4

k v B3 u

"

r#

u

M M2u 3 2 2 2u

u

and

q2u B

12kv M2u

M3u

9b

24M2u

M3u M2u 3 2

q u B2

13a

M3l

u3u

9a

371

12

either elastic condition, uplift- and yield-only stress states. In

this study, the state of stress of combined soil yield and

foundation uplift is considered. An expression is derived to

describe this state represented by segment (5) of the

moment rotation curve shown in Fig. 2. This segment of

the moment rotation curve represents the foundation

response beyond the states defined by Eqs. (9a), (9b), (13a),

and (13b), regardless of which occurred first, uplift or yield.

Considering the kinematics of this stress state yields (Fig. 3d)

14

obtained

qx kv uB1 2 h 2 x

15a

qx qu kv uBj 2 x

15b

q

h j 1 2 u

k v uB

16

P q u Bj

M

k v u B2

1 2 h j2

2

17a

q u B2

k u B3

1 2 h j2 21 2 2h 4j

jj 2 1 v

2

12

17b

rearranging, the equation for the moment rotation curve

for this condition can be derived as

M

Eq. (12) shows that similar to the initial uplift condition, the

moment is inversely proportional to the square root of the

rotation. Assuming that progressive soil yield without

footing uplift continues until the ultimate condition is

reached (i.e. footing failure at which j 1), from Eq. (11),

M 3M2u : However, uplift would generally occur before

the condition of j 1 is reached. The onset of footing uplift

after initiation of soil yield can be obtained from Eqs. (10a),

13b

"

or

5PB

2P2

q B2

2

2 u

6

3qu

6

PB

P2

q3u

2

2

2

2qu

24kv u2

18

lim M

u!1

PB

P2

2

2

2qu

19

foundation, which can also be derived by considering the

foundation equilibrium (statics) when a fully plastic stress

372

inversely proportional to the square of the rotation.

Substituting Eqs. (9a) and (13a) into Eq. (19) yields the

same expressions as Eqs. (9b) and (13b). This validates the

derived moment rotation expression for this stress state.

The equations derived above define the static moment

rotation response curve completely for any stress state.

These equations are used to evaluate the response of

different foundations under different loading conditions. To

enable a comparison between different footings under

different response conditions, nondimensional variables

(c; x; MqB ) are introduced as follows

kv B

qu

20a

P

qu B

20b

MqB

M

qu B2

20c

stiffness to its strength; x is the inverse of the foundation

bearing capacity safety factor under vertical load, FS; and

MqB is a normalized (nondimensional) moment. Using these

nondimensional variables, the complete moment rotation

relation can be expressed as

For x # 12

8

cu

>

>

>

>

12

>

>

>

s!

>

< x

2x

MqB

322

>

cu

6

>

>

>

>

>

>1

1

>

: x 2 x2 2

2

24c2 u2

0#u#

2x

c

2x

1

#u#

c

2cx

u$

21a

1

2cx

and for x # 12

8

cu

212 x

>

>

0#u#

>

>

12

c

>

>

>

s!

>

< 12 x

212 x 212 x

1

MqB

322

#u#

>

6

2c12 x

cu

c

>

>

>

>

>

>

1

1

1

>

:

x 2 x2 2

u$

2

2

2

2c12 x

24c u

21b

Eqs. (21a) and (21b) show that the normalized moment,

MqB ; is a function of only c and x: Figs. 4 and 5 show

the moment rotation response curves for a range of values of

c and x:

Fig. 4 shows the moment rotation curves for x 0:2;

and a range of practical values of c (50 1200). Small

values of c (Fig. 4a) represent foundations supported on

strong soils such as stiff clays and dense sand, where the

soil strength is high compared to its stiffness. Such

foundations will usually have a small width. On the other

hand, large values of c (Fig. 4b) represent foundations of

Fig. 4. Computed momentrotation curves for x 0.2: (a) for small c; (b) large c:

373

soil such as soft clay or loose sand. It is noted from Fig. 4

that the rotational stiffness of the foundation (manifested

by the slope of the moment rotation curve) increases with

an increase in c: The figure also reveals that the ultimate

rotation decreases as c increases, almost linearly, i.e. the

ultimate rotation decreased by an order of magnitude as c

increased by an order of magnitude. It is worth

mentioning here that Eurocode 7 [15] specifies 6 millirad

(mrad) as the relative rotation to cause an ultimate limit

state. From Fig. 4, it can be observed that rotation of

6 mrad represents an elastic response for the case of c

50 and represents a nonlinear response state for the case

of c 1200:

Fig. 5 shows the effect of x on the moment rotation

response of foundations with c 200: It can be clearly seen

from the figure that the moment response increases as x

increases until it reaches 0.5, and then declines as x

continues to increase. The insert in Fig. 5 shows that the

maximum value of MqB ; which does not depend upon c;

varies with x in a parabolic manner, and attains a maximum

value of 0.125 at x 0:5: This shows that x 0:5

represents a limiting condition on the moment rotation

response of a spread rigid footing based on the Winkler soil

model.

5. Discussion

The FEMA 273/274 documents and Siddharthan et al.

[13] state that the significance of x is that its value, above

yielding of the soil would occur first. However, the main

significance of x 0:5 is that it defines the maximum

moment rotation response possible as shown in Fig. 5.

This is further illustrated in Fig. 6, which shows initiation

of different stress states for different x values. For x

0:5; the uplift-yield portion segment follows immediately

after the elastic segment (point R). This shows that for

this case x 0:5; a yield-only or uplift-only condition

does not occur. On the other hand, uplift- and yield-only

conditions occur after the elastic condition at u 1 mrad

(point P) for x 0:1 (e.g. foundations where conditions

other than bearing capacity demands govern the design)

and x 0:9 (e.g. foundations of existing structures that

need retrofitting because of increased loads as a result of

code revisions or change in the use of structure),

respectively. However, the yield-uplift condition occurs,

but at a large rotation of u 25 mrad (not shown on the

graph). For x 0:3 (typical foundation design) and x

0:7 (foundation designed to mobilize its ultimate capacity

under seismic conditions), uplift (for x 0:3) and yield

(x 0:7) initiate at u 3 mrad (point Q). The onset of

the yield-uplift condition occurs at u 8 mrad (point S).

It can thus be concluded that as x approaches 0.5 from

either side, the region where uplift-only or yield-only

occurs shrinks and the region where yield and uplift occur

expands. Based on this observation, three regions of

moment rotation responses can be postulated: upliftdominant region; uplift-yield region; and yield-dominant

region.

374

observations can be made

1. The moment rotation curve included in the FEMA

273/274 documents (Fig. 2) presents a seemingly different

picture to some of the inferences drawn in this section. First,

the curves for the initial uplift or initial yield conditions are

shown as two separate curves (1 3 5 6 and 1 4 5 6,

respectively), with the initial uplift curve lying above that

for the initial yield. This implies that for the same c value, a

foundation design with x , 0:5 (which leads to initial

uplift) would result in a larger moment response than the

case where x . 0:5 (which leads to initial yield). However,

both curves are similar and the moment rotation response

is rather influenced by the absolute difference between x and

x 0:5: Secondly, Fig. 2 shows that segment (5) of the

curve, which represents the uplift-yield condition is

asymptotic to the ultimate elastic condition, M PB=2:

This is incorrect, since no yielding occurs by definition

(infinitely strong soil).

2. Siddharthan et al. [13,14] stated that the rocking

response could be grouped into either the initial uplift

condition, or the initial yield condition. It has been shown

that the equations for ultimate moment for both conditions

(Eqs. (9b) and (13b)) are the same if formulated in terms

of x: The results presented herein show that based on the

value of x; the moment rotation response can rather be

grouped into three categories based on dominating behavior

and not two categories based on the initiation of uplift of

also been derived.

6. Comparison with experimental results

6.1. Foundation rocking experiments

It is important to validate and corroborate any analytical

or numerical model by experimental evidence. Bartlett [12]

and Wiessing [16] conducted rocking tests on foundations

installed in clay and sand, respectively. The experimental

results agreed, in general, with those obtained numerically

from an elastic perfectly plastic cyclic Winkler model.

The ability of the Winkler approach developed in this

study to evaluate the moment rotation behavior of a

foundation is verified using available experimental results.

The model developed is used to analyze the moment

rotation response of foundations subjected to rocking action

in a laboratory testing program and the results are compared

with the measured values.

The European Commission (EC) sponsored the project

TRISEE (3D Site Effects of Soil Foundation Interaction in

Earthquake and Vibration Risk Evaluation), which included

large-scale model testing to examine the response of rigid

footings to dynamic loads. The results of these tests are of

high quality and are readily available [17]. Therefore, these

tests are analyzed using the developed model and the results

are compared with the measured values.

The experiments involved a 1 m square footing model

embedded to a depth of 1 m, in a 4.6 m 4.6 m 3 m deep

sample of saturated Ticino sand. Ticino sand is a uniform

coarse-to-medium silica sand. The properties of the sand are

as follows: D50 0:55 mm; coefficient of uniformity, Cu

1:6; specific gravity, Gs 2:684; emin 0:579; and emax

0:931 [18]. Two series of tests were performed on the model

foundation installed in two different soil samples with

relative density of 45% (low density, LD) and 85% (high

density, HD).

A vertical load of 100 and 300 kN was applied to the LD

and HD samples, respectively, before the application of the

horizontal cyclic loading phase. The imposed pressures of

100 and 300 kPa represent typical design pressures for

foundations in medium to dense sands, where the design is

usually governed by admissible settlement, and not bearing

capacity requirements. The resulting static FS under vertical

load only was found to be about five in both cases. The

cyclic loading involved three phases: Phase Ithe application of small-amplitude force-controlled cycles; Phase

IIthe application of a typical earthquake-like time history;

and Phase IIIsinusoidal displacement cycles of increasing

amplitude. Only relevant sections of the results of the tests

would be presented for comparison purposes. Further

information on the experiments can be found in Refs.

[17 20].

6.3. Comparison with TRISEE experiments

A reasonably accurate estimate of the soil subgrade

modulus, kv ; is required for the analytical model to

375

the loading tests. The load deformation results obtained

during the application of the static vertical load only (similar

to a plate loading test) were used to back figure the soil

subgrade modulus. Atkinson [21] recommended that results

of plate loading tests, when expressed in terms of an

average strain given by the settlement/width ratio, e a

rs =B; are similar to the results of a triaxial test but scaled up

by a factor of 2 3. Briaud and Gibbens [22] Ismael [23]

made similar observations regarding the relationship of P

versus rs =B in plate loading tests.

Fig. 7 shows the load deformation results of the

TRISEE experiments plotted in terms of e a ; along with

the stiffness values (subgrade modulus) for initial, secant

and unload reload loading conditions as evaluated from the

test results. These values of the subgrade modulus are used

in the developed Winkler model to calculate the moment

rocking response of the foundation and the results are

compared with the measured response in Fig. 8. It should be

noted that the measured response represents the envelop of

the loading cycles with gradually increasing peak amplitude

(i.e. obtained by connecting the tips of the hysteretic loops)

[24,25]. Lo Priesti et al. [26] noted that because of the

different impact of plastic strains under different loading

conditions, it is impossible to obtain the same backbone

curve for both monotonic and cyclic loading. Fig. 8 shows

that the results computed using the unload reload stiffness

gives the best agreement with the experimental results. The

initial stiffness is slightly underestimated, but the overall

response is generally satisfactory. This is expected since

cyclic loading represents an unload reload action, and the

unload reload stiffness is more representative of the smallstrain stiffness.

Fig. 7. Loaddeformation results from TRISEE experiments: (a) for HD tests; (b) for LD tests.

376

Soil nonlinearity and creep effects significantly influence the initial stiffness. For example, the experimental

results for the LD specimen showed that the creep

settlement accounted for about 40% of the observed

settlement [18]. The comparison in Fig. 8 of moment

rotation curves (rocking stiffness) calculated using different subgrade moduli with the experimentally determined

curve shows that rocking stiffness is grossly underestimated when the secant subgrade modulus is used in

the calculations. This result shows that care and judgment

are required to select an appropriate subgrade modulus.

in Section 7.

7.1. Code recommendations

The NEHRP FEMA 273/274 provisions for SSI in a

seismic response analysis vary according to the type of

analysis performed. For the linear static procedure (LSP),

[27] should be used. For the linear dynamic procedure

(LDP), equivalent elastic foundation stiffnesses are used.

For the nonlinear static procedure (NSP), static force

deformation curves are used to model the foundation

response. Finally, complete cyclic force deformation

curves are used to model the foundation in the nonlinear

dynamic procedure (NDP).

The recommended force deformation curve is a bilinear

moment rotation relationship, and will be referred to as the

bilinear model herein. The bilinear model accounts for soil

variability and difficulty in accurately determining the

foundation loads and other factors by introducing upper and

lower bounds. The upper and lower bounds are specified as

twice and one half the best estimates of stiffness and

strength. The best stiffness estimates are based on the elastic

halfspace solutions [28], the best bearing capacity estimate

is based on bearing capacity of a shallow footing under

vertical load [29] and the ultimate moment capacity is

evaluated using Eq. (19).

7.2. Discussion of factors affecting estimation of the shear

modulus

7.2.1. Mean effective pressure

The FEMA 302/303 documents state that the mean

effective pressure, sm ; should be estimated using both the

overburden and applied pressures, while the FEMA 273/274

documents stipulate the use of the overburden pressure only.

The assumed value sm may have a significant effect on the

small-strain soil modulus, E0 ; calculated from expressions

that relate the soil modulus to the mean effective pressure,

e.g. [30]

E0 1510

2:17 2 e2 0

sm 0:53p0:47

a

1e

22

triaxial tests performed on Ticino sand that was used in the

TRISEE experiments. The variation of the calculated shear

modulus with the assumption used to calculate sm for the

soil sample used in the TRISEE experiment is shown in

Table 1. The difference between G0 (calculated from E0

assuming isotropic elastic conditions) based on the two

assumptions within 1 m below the foundation (i.e. one B;

where most of stress increase and deformation occur due to

applied vertical load) is around 50% for the HD case. Since

the FEMA 273/274 specifies a lower bound based on one

half of the best estimate of stiffness and bearing capacity to

cover all sources of uncertainty, care must be exercised

when calculating the mean effective pressure.

7.2.2. Shear modulus reduction curve

Equivalent linear methods that make use of the secant

stiffness (i.e. reduced modulus) estimated from load

deformation curves [21] are usually employed when

analyzing the nonlinear response of foundations subjected

377

Table 1

Variation of G0 with depth for different assumptions of the mean effective

pressure, sm

Depth G0 overburden applied stress G0 overburden only Difference

(m)

(MPa)

(MPa)

(%)

HD test

0.5

91.0

1

71.5

2.5

55.0

26.0

30.5

41.5

71

57

25

LD test

0.5

43.0

1

37.0

2.5

35.0

20.0

23.0

31.0

53

38

11

curves approach was developed mainly for the dynamic

loading case, but has been used for both static and dynamic

loading cases. This causes some confusion regarding the

definition of modulus reduction curves, which has been the

focus of some research [21,31,32].

The maximum, small-strain soil shear modulus, G0 ; has

the same value for static monotonic, static cyclic and

dynamic loading cases [31,32]. On the other hand, the

modulus reduction curve is the same for static cyclic and

dynamic loading cases, but different for static monotonic

loading. For static monotonic loading, the modulus

reduction curve is defined as a reduction in the secant

stiffness from the origin to a specified point on the

monotonic curve with an increase in static shear strain;

while for cyclic (dynamic) loading, it is defined as a

reduction in the peak-to-peak secant stiffness of the

unload reload hysteretic loops with an increase in cyclic

shear strain. For dynamic analysis, G0 can thus be

evaluated using monotonic loading tests, however, modulus of reduction curves must be obtained from cyclic

loading tests [33]. This further explains why the unload

reload stiffness gave a better comparison with the TRISEE

experimental results.

Fig. 9 shows the modulus reduction curves established

from the TRISEE test results during the initial static loading

phase [18] by normalizing the soil elastic modulus, E; backcalculated from the test results using the small-strain soil

modulus, E0 : Fig. 9 shows that the unload reload elastic

modulus represents 70% of the small-strain modulus

calculated by Eq. (22). A better agreement between the

two values of the soil modulus would be expected.

However, the difference is mainly due to the assumptions

used when estimating the secant Youngs modulus, and the

effect of soil nonlinearity on the modulus obtained from

only one unload reload cycle [31,34]. It is thus expected

that the correct value of the unload reload modulus would

be . 0:7E0 : During the cyclic phase of the experiment, an

increase in the cyclic shear strain as a result of the

interaction between the foundation and the soil (commonly

378

in the unload reload modulus. This phenomenon is

localized and when its effect is averaged over the depth of

the soil medium, the reduction in G is not expected to be

large. Therefore, it is assumed that the opposing effects

would cancel out and G can be taken as 0:7G0 :

7.2.3. Assumptions for G

Table 2 shows values of the rocking and vertical stiffness

computed using generalized uncoupled static stiffness

given in FEMA 302/303 based on different assumptions for

G: The table also shows the equivalent subgrade modulus

estimated from either the rocking or vertical stiffness

(according to the approach given in the FEMA 273/274

guidelines). The FEMA 302/303 recommendations specify

the depth of influence for rocking and horizontal/vertical

motions as 1:5ru and 4ru ; respectively, where ru and ru are

the equivalent radii of a circular foundation with the same

moment of inertia and area. For the square foundation, this

results in a depth of influence of 0.6 m for rocking motion

and 2.2 m for translational motion. Representative values of

the small-strain shear modulus, G0 ; are thus computed at 0.3

and 1 m (representing one B) below the footing for both

motion types. The different assumptions used for G are as

follows.

1. G back-calculated from the unload reload modulus

shown in Fig. 9. As discussed earlier, this value is

assumed to be representative of the best estimate of G:

2. G G0 ; i.e. no reduction in the soil shear modulus,

assuming that the cyclic strain is relatively small. This

assumption is expected to result in a slight overestimation of the stiffness and thus underestimates the predicted

response.

3. G back-calculated from the rocking stiffness expression,

using the measured small displacement rocking stiffness

obtained during Phase I of the TRISEE experiment.

Table 2

Computed foundation stiffnesses based on the different assumptions for G

HD test

G; taken as equal to

G0 (MPa)

G; from unloadreload

stiffness (MPa)

G; from Phase I experimental

M 2 u stiffness (MPa)a

G; from guideline G reduction

factors (MPa)

Winkler-based on unload

reload stiffness

LD test

G; taken as equal to

G0 (MPa)

G; from unloadreload

stiffness (MPa)

G; from Phase I experimental

M 2 u stiffness (MPa)a

G; from guideline G reduction

factors (MPa)

Winkler-based on unload

reload stiffness

a

b

Uncoupled rocking

stiffness (MN/m)

Uncoupled vertical

stiffness (MN/m)

from rocking stiffness (MN/m2)

vertical stiffness (MN/m2)

22.0

252.0

270.0

252.0

16.0

176.0

190.0

176.0

40

627.0

480.0

627.0

101.0

100.0

101.0

23.3

280.0b

10.5

129.5

125.0

129.5

7.0

90.5

88.0

90.5

251.0

192.0

251.0

52.0

50.0

52.0

9.0

16

4.05

8.3

100.0b

Value of Winkler spring stiffness estimated using measured unload reload stiffness.

calculated values of G0 : This value is considered to

represent an upper bound for G:

4. G estimated using the reduction factors specified in the

FEMA 273/274 guidelines. This value is estimated using

the maximum base shear of 0:4P for Phase III of the

TRISEE tests, which leads to an effective shear modulus

ratio of 0.4. This estimate is not expected to produce a

good comparison with the measured response because

the cyclic loading is through the foundation, while the

reduction factor used is proposed for soil primary

nonlinearity associated with cyclic loading through the

379

lower bound for G:

7.3. Comparison between Winkler approach and code

bilinear model

The force deformation curves are established employing

the bilinear model and using stiffness constants based on the

different G values as shown in Table 2 for both HD and LD

tests. The results are compared in Fig. 10 with force

deformation curves computed based on the Winkler model

and assuming two different values for the subgrade modulus:

Fig. 10. Comparison of code bilinear approximation and computed curves based on the rocking and vertical stiffnesses with experimental curves.

380

the rocking stiffness as described in the NEHRP FEMA 273/

274 guidelines. The force deformation curves measured

during the tests are also shown in the figure.

Fig. 10 shows that both the code bilinear approximation

and the computed Winkler curves agree quite well with the

measured responses for HD and LD tests when G values are

obtained from cases 1 or 2 (i.e. G back-calculated from the

unload reload modulus or G G0 ). The prediction for case

2 was better than case 1, even though the opposite was

expected. It is interesting to note from Table 2 that the

computed stiffnesses for case 2 are very close to the

computed Winkler values, which were obtained based on

the measured unload reload stiffness (i.e. the curves for this

case are almost identical to those shown in Fig. 8). For

almost all cases, the initial stiffness is lower than the

measured for both the bilinear and Winkler models.

However, the overall response prediction is generally

satisfactory. Using the G value for case 3 (i.e. Phase III in

the TRISEE experiment) the initial stiffness is accurately

predicted, but as expected, both models, especially the

bilinear model, overestimate the overall response. Finally,

using the code G reduction factors resulted in a large

underestimation of the initial stiffness and in general a poor

prediction of the response for both models. This case

represents a lower bound for stiffness.

It may be inferred from the results that using a lower

bound stiffness estimate in combination with a best ultimate

moment estimate could lead to a significant overestimation

of the yield displacement, which for bilinear models defines

the onset of nonlinear effects. In this case, the permanent

displacement of the foundation may be underestimated. It

can also be concluded that a good estimate of the value of G

is important to accurately predict the moment rotation

response of the foundation using the code bilinear or

Winkler models.

Fig. 10 also shows that using a value of the subgrade

modulus back figured from either the vertical or rocking

uncoupled stiffness did not have a significant effect on the

computed response. For situations where the depth of

influence for both rocking and translation are assumed to be

the same [36,37], the vertical response would be only

slightly larger than that of the rocking, and could be ignored

when compared to the effect of the value of G: Thus, the

selection of the value of G is more crucial regardless of

which approach is used to evaluate the subgrade modulus.

8. Conclusions

The moment rotation response of rigid spread footings

has been investigated. A solution for the uplift-yield

foundation condition has been derived. The developed

solution, along with the solutions for uplift- and yield-only

conditions enables the full definition of the entire static

moment rotation response. The developed model was used

conclusions are made.

1. x 0:5 represents the condition for the maximum

moment response based on the Winkler soil model.

2. The moment rotation response is rather influenced by

the absolute difference between x and x 0:5; which

dictates whether uplift or yield is dominant. Based on the

value of x; the moment rotation response can be

grouped into three categories: uplift-dominant, upliftyield and yield dominant.

3. The unload reload stiffness should be used to estimate

the value of the subgrade modulus in dynamic analysis.

The secant stiffness and initial stiffness lead to underestimating the subgrade modulus.

4. The value of G used in the analysis has a significant

effect on the calculated response. The response calculated using G with no reduction factor in both the code

bilinear model and the Winkler model agreed well with

the measured response.

5. Using either the rocking stiffness or vertical stiffness to

estimate the value of the subgrade modulus has a

minimal effect on the calculated response.

Acknowledgements

This research was supported by financial support from

the Institute for Catastrophic Loss Reduction at the

University of Western Ontario to the senior author and a

graduate scholarship to the first author from the National

Science and Engineering Research Center (NSERC). The

authors would also like to thank Dr P. Negro of the

European Laboratory for Structural Assessment (ELSA) for

making available the test results of the TRISEE

experiments.

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