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ENCE4610

FoundationAnalysisandDesign

Combined Footings and Mat Foundations

A mat is continuous in
two directions capable
of supporting multiple
columns, wall or floor
loads. It has dimensions
from 20 to 80 ft or more
for houses and hundreds
of feet for large
structures such as multistory hospitals and some
warehouses
Ribbed mats, consisting
of stiffening beams
placed below a flat slab
are useful in unstable
soils such as expansive,
collapsible or soft
materials where
differential movements
can be significant
(exceeding 0.5 inch).
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o Floating Foundations
o Coefficient of Subgrade Reaction
o Loads and Moments on Combined
Footings
o Design of Mats

Topics for Mat Foundations

MatFoundations

require large area to
Soil is erratic and
prone to differential
settlements
erratic
Unevenly distributed
Uplift loads are larger
can accommodate;
weight of the mat is
a factor here
Mat foundations are
easier to waterproof

Mat
foundation is 3
metres thick
and bottomed
at 19.2 m
below street
level

Example:
Chase Tower,
Houston, TX

ConditionsforMat
Foundations

Type of mat foundation

that relies partially or
entirely on the weight of
the soil/water
combination it displaces
to support the structure
above it
A truly "floating"
foundation exists where
the weight of the soil
removed is greater than
or equal to the weight of
the building that replaces
it
Although foundations
can be made to float
entirely, it many not be
advisable due to heave
or settlement due to
changes in ground
conditions

o We can do this either on a

weight or pressure
(weight/area) basis

Very useful for

structures with hollow
subterranean
structures
In this course, we will
analyse floating
foundations using the
buoyancy method of
analysis, i.e.,
comparing the weight
of the structure to the
weight of the soil
displaced

FloatingFoundations

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Buoyancy
Method

FloatingFoundations
BasicsofBuoyancyMethod

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o Foundation as Shown
o Foundation is 50 m long
and 70 m wide
o Sum of column and wall
loads = 805 MN

Given

o Average bearing pressure

of foundation
o Increase in stress due to
o Whether foundation will
float

Find

FloatingFoundation
Example

W = 148.68 + 805 = 953.68 MN

A = (50)(70) = 3500 m2

Compute area of
foundation

Compute total structure

Wf = (23.6)(50)(70)(1.8) = 148.68
MN

p = 953.68/3500 = 0.272 MPa =

272.5 kPa

Compute pressure of
structure on foundation

Compute weight of
bottom of mat

Ws = (19)(50)(70)(8.7) = 578.55
MN

165.3 kPa

p = 272.5-165.3 = 107.2 kPa

Foundation will float so long
as bearing capacity or
settlement analysis determines
that 107.2 kPa is an

Compute change in
pressure on foundation

Compute displacement
on pressure basis (same
as total stress on base of
foundation)

Compute weight of soil

displaced by foundation

FloatingFoundation
Example

The deformation
characteristics of the soil
are quantified in the
modulus, which is similar to
the modulus of elasticity for
unidirectional deformation

These deformation characteristics

can be either linear or non-linear
(especially in the case of the soils)

Nonrigid methods must

take into account that
both the soil and the
foundation have
deformation
characteristics.
z

q = bearing pressure
= settlement
z

ks = coefficient of subgrade
reaction, units of force/length3
(the units are the same as the
unit weight, but not the
significance!)
z

q
ks =

Definition of
Coefficient of

Reaction

If using a pseudo-coupled
value, use values of ks in
the centre of the mat
which are half those along
the perimeter
This methodology has the
potential of eliminating the
problems described earlier
while at the same time
yielding values of ks which
then can be used in a
structural analysis of the
mat with some degree of
confidence

Use settlement techniques

such as Terzaghi's
consolidation theory,
Schmertmann's or Houghs
method, etc., and express
the results in a ks value

Methods used to
determine coefficient

Relationships developed are

too limited in their application
possibilities

Derived relationships
between ks and Es

Test results must be adjusted

between the shape of the
shape of the foundation
Adjustment must also be
made for the size of the plate
vs. the size of the foundation,
and the influence of size on
the depth of soil stress (see
following slide)
Attempts to make accurate
adjustments have not been
very successful to date

Methods used to
determine coefficient

DeterminingtheCoefficient

Common method of
estimating the
reaction
Load is applied to plate
using reaction system
Described in some
detail in Murthy 13.2
Results in a loadsettlement curve of the
plate

Reaction

Non-linear nature of soil deformation

makes unique value of ks non-existent

term cases

With compressible (and especially cohesive

compressible soils) mat settlement is a process
which may take several years

Time

To model the soil accurately, ks needs to be larger

near the edges of the mat and smaller near the
centre

Change in stress in the soil due to q is a

smaller percentage of the initial stress at
greater depths
Shape of the loaded area: stresses
beneath long, narrow loaded area is
different from those below square loaded
areas

Width of the loaded area; wide

mat will settle more than a
narrow one because more soil is
mobilised by a wide mat
Depth of the loaded area below
the ground surface

DifficultiesinDeterminingthe

o For sands, ks1 = k1 for practical

purposes
o For clays, must correct for
beam length of foundation

If results of plate load or

other tests/methods are
unavailable, use typical
values of k1 given in
Table 14.1
Determine value of ks1
(results from plate

2k1 L + 0.5
(US Units, L in feet)

3 L

k s1 =

2k1
k s1 =
3

o Infinite beams and

foundations:

2k1 L + 0.152
(SI Units, L in meters)

3
L

foundations:

k s1 =

Value of ks1 for clays:

Reaction(Murthy14.4)

o This basically upscales the

results from the size of the
plate load test to the actual
size of the foundation
o All of the limitations just
discussed with this method
need to be kept in mind when
doing this

Determine actual
reaction ks from ks1
Sands
2

3k s1
ks =
B

o Clays

B + 1
(US Units, L in feet)
k s = k s1

2B

B + 0.3
(SI Units, L in meters)
k s = k s1

2B

Scale Factors

Reaction(Murthy14.4)

Foundation is rigid
relative to soil

Settlement, using coefficient

of subgrade reaction and
assuming the following:

Find

120 kPa

Mat founded on medium sand

Structure to be supported on a
30 m wide by 50 m long mat
foundation

Given

ks =

Substitute and solve for

deflection:
q

Substituting B = 30 m, ks = 11.5
MN/m3

B + 0.30
k s = k sl
2 B

determine ks:

For medium sand, k1 = 45

MN/m3

Solution

q
120 kPa
=
=
= 10 . 4 mm
3
k s 11500 kN / m

ExampleofUsingCoefficientof

Non-uniformity of the strata

below the foundation
reaction to the actual size of
the foundation
With flexible foundations
(and that includes mats and
pavements) the coefficient
of subgrade reaction is
influenced by flexibility of
foundation
All of these factors make the
solution of the example
problem very preliminary

ProblemswiththeCoefficientof

Application of
reaction to larger mats
z

P + W f u D = qdA = k s dA

Portions of the mat that

experience more
settlement produce
more compression in the
springs
Sum of these springs must
equal the applied
structural loads plus the
weight of the mat

Reaction

Strength
z
Evaluate these requirements
using factored loads and
LRFD design methods
z
Mat must have sufficient
thickness T and reinforcement
to safety resist these loads
z
T should be large enough so
that no shear reinforcement is
required
Serviceability
z
Evaluate using unfactored
deformation at places of
concentrated loads, such as
columns, soil non-uniformities,
mat non-uniformities, etc.
z
This is the equivalent of a
differential settlement analysis
z
Mat must be made thicker if
this is a problem
Example: Murthy, Ex. 14.4

Structural design requires

two analyses

StructuralDesignofCombined
FootingsandMats

Methods
z Coupled Method
z Pseudo-Coupled
Method
z Multiple-Parameter
Method
z Finite Element
Method

z Winkler

Nonrigid methods
consider the
deformation of the
mat and their
influence of bearing
pressure distribution.
These methods
produce more
accurate values of
mat deformations and
stresses
These methods are
more difficult to
implement than rigid
methods because of
soil-structure
interaction

NonrigidMethods

The earliest use of these

"springs" to represent the
interaction between soil and
foundation was done by
Winkler in 1867; the model is
thus referred to as the Winkler
method
The one-dimensional
representation of this is a
"beam on elastic foundation,"
thus sometimes it is called the
"beam on elastic foundation"
method
Mat foundations represent a
two-dimensional application
of the Winkler method

WinklerMethods

Soil springs do not act

independently. Bearing
pressure on one part of
the mat influences both
the "spring" under it and
those surrounding it (due
to lateral earth pressure)
No single value of ks truly
represents the
interaction between the
soil and the mat
The independent spring
problem is in reality the
largest problem with the
Winkler model
z

Actual data show that such a matsoil interaction will deflect in the
centre more than the edges
This is one reason why we use other
methods (such as Schmertmann's or
Houghs) to determine settlement

not really linear; we must
make a linear
approximation to use the
Winkler model
Winkler model assumes that
a uniformly loaded mat
underlain by a perfectly
uniform soil will uniformly
settle into the soil.

LimitationsofWinkler
Method

Ideally the coupled method, which uses additional

springs as shown below, is more accurate than the
Winkler method
The problem with the coupled method comes in
selecting the values of ks for the coupling springs

CoupledMethod

Method bypasses the guesswork involved in

distributing the ks values in the pseudo-coupled
method; should be more accurate
Method has not been implemented into software
packages and thus is not routinely used on
design projects

This method replaces the independently-acting

linear springs of the Winkler method with springs
and other mechanical elements

MultipleParameter
Method

Can be done but is rarely

performed in practice

Models the entire soilmat system in a threedimensional way

In theory, should be the
most accurate method

Finite element method is used

for structural analysis
Mat is modelled in a similar
way to other plate structures
with springs connected at the
nodes of the elements
Mat is loaded with column
applied area loads, and mat
weight
Usually superstructure stiffness is
not considered (conservative)

FiniteElementMethod

Methods for spread footings can be used with mat foundations,

including presumptive bearing capacities

Bearing capacity

"Bed of springs" solution should not be used to compute total settlement;

this should be done using other methods

Total settlement

OtherConsiderationsin
MatFoundations

Questions