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  • Driven Piles are

    Tested Piles!Advance slides by using PgDn or right arrow

  • A Presentation of

  • From a stick in the mud to a technologically proven tool, driven piles are as old as history and as new as tomorrow!

  • Archeologists have determined that driven piles have been used since Neolithic times. The lake dwellers of what is now Switzerland, northern Italy, Austria and eastern France constructed their villages on driven pile supported platforms as a defensive measure. The builders of the ancient village discovered at Wangen, Switzerland utilized 50,000 piles in the construction of their village. Primitive civilizations around the world have used driven piles and poles to support their homes in water and in flood prone areas. Predecessors to the Aztecs in the Mexico City area built their sites on lakes in the area on pile supported mats topped with soil called Chinampas or on areas contained by driven piles and filled with soil and stone. Ancient tribes in the Java Sea area built stilted villages. Ancient Chinese engineers built bridges on driven piles.

  • The Greeks and Romans utilized driven piles to support bridges, aqueducts and other structures in poor soils, many of which are in use today. Bridges crossing the major rivers of Europe were constructed by the Romans to maintain control of their empire. The Roman Circus at Arles in France was founded on driven piles and in modern archeological excavations found to be in good condition and to have supported their loads for about a thousand years until the structure fell into disuse. Amsterdam was founded in the early 1300s. During a major growth period in the 1600s the digging of canals created a hundred man-made islands for housing. These residential areas were connected by 300 pile supported bridges. Even today, most of the city is pile supported. Other examples of historical use of driven piles abound throughout Europe.

    Roman Aqueduct Model of Pile Foundation, Circus of Arles

  • Equipment used to drive piles by the ancient builders developed very slowly and was obviously very simple in design in the early stages. Prior to about 1600 all post and pile drivers were hand operated. After that time developments began to be made using other sources of power.

    From this, to

  • These, primitive rigs, to

  • An early 20th Century skid rig,

  • A modern barge mounted rig utilizing an accurately placed template.

  • Today owners, engineers and contractors have a whole arsenal of modern technology and tools available to them to assist in providing efficient and economical deep foundation solutions.

  • From site investigation to design, better understanding of soil properties and new computerized tools are available to engineers. Installation problems, equipment capabilities and load carrying characteristics of various pile types are able to be anticipated with a high degree of accuracy even before the design is completed. Better understanding of the performance and strength of materials, in conjunction with new and stronger materials, and working together with modern codes, permit greater efficiencies in the selection of pile types.

  • Modern equipment can be employed by contractors to ensure safe, quick and adequate installation of driven piles. Global Positioning Systems (GPS) aid in survey and accurate layout of pile locations. New hammers are capable of energy adjustments and monitoring to provide the required hammer performance while protecting the piles from damage. Instruments can be used during testing and installation to confirm the design and pile load capabilities. Testing techniques are also available to check the performance of previously driven piles to compare them with the requirements of the specifications.

  • A driven pile is a tested pile!

    Definitions and comparison to other deep foundation elements.

  • A pile can be defined as a structural column installed in earth and provided to offer support or to

    resist forces.

  • A Driven Pile is a relatively long, slender column, provided to offer support or to resist forces, made of preformed material, and having a predetermined shape and size that can be physically inspected prior to, and during installation, and which is installed by impact hammering, vibrating, or pushing into the earth.

  • A Drilled Pile is made of concrete or grout and cast or poured, in a plastic state, into a drilled hole in the earth. Augercast, Drilled Shafts, Drilled Cast-in-Place and, their variations are all forms of drilled piles. Completed drilled piles cannot be easily inspected after installation and can be difficult to install in very soft or loose soils, wet, and marine conditions.

  • A Drilled Pile removes soil from the ground and the resulting round hole is filled with concrete or grout.

    A Driven Pile is installed as a whole, rigid, structural member into the ground from the surface. Driven Piles are said to be either displacement or non-displacement piles.

  • Displacement Piles are considered solid shapes that during installation, displace the soil laterally.

    Non-displacement Piles are of hollow or outline shape and displace little or no soil during installation.

  • Basic Pile Installation Techniques

    (driven vs. drilling)

  • Drilled Piles are installed by drilling a hole in the soil, typically using an auger. Grout or

    concrete is placed in the hole to form the


  • Augered Cast-in-Place Pile Installation

  • Drilled Shaft Installation

  • Driven piles are installed using an impact hammer, vibro driver or hydraulic press and performance is routinely monitored during operation. Modern driven pile installation equipment is capable of providing consistent, known energy that can be easily measured during operation. Advancement of the pile into the earth can be monitored and recorded for future study and comparison to other tested and installed piles.

  • A Driven Pile is one which is of

    predetermined solid material, shape and

    size, that can be seen, felt, and,

    inspected prior to installation and

    which is installed by driving or pushing

    into the earth.

  • Driven Piles can be classified by their structural use (design

    function) or, by the materials from which they are made.

    Types of Driven Piles

  • Piles classed by structural use will fall into one of the following groups or combinations of these groups.

    Resisting Vertical Compressive Forces

    Resisting Lateral Forces

    Resisting Tension Forces

  • Resisting Vertical Compressive Forces - where the anticipated support requires resistance to vertical compressive loads, such as for buildings, bridges, docks, towers, tanks, etc.

  • Resisting Lateral Forces - where the forces to be supported are from the side or laterally, as in sheet piles, mooring and fender piles and other

    similar situations.

  • Resisting Tension Forces - counteracting wind or overturn loads (guyed anchors for towers, signs); opposing buoyancy and floatation forces as in tanks, pools, mooring pile, etc.; load balance in footing design limitations, etc.

  • Piles classed by the materials from which they are made will

    be one of the following or combinations of these:

  • Timber Concrete (Precast & Precast-prestressed). Pipe Piles (Open-end & Closed-end

    concrete filled). Structural Steel & Aluminum Shapes ("H

    sections, sheets, combo piles). Synthetic materials (fiberglass, polymers,

    vinyl, etc.)

  • Driven piles can be either displacement piles, i.e. of solid shape or, non-

    displacement, i.e. hollow or of outline shape. Sheet piles are specialized types of non-displacement piles formed in sheets and having connections on the edges to permit interlocking with adjacent piles.

    Composites and combinations of these are also used.

  • Timber PilesTimber piles are made from the trunks of tall, straight trees. The more typical species are conifers such as Southern Yellow Pine and Douglas Fir. Untreated timber piles are suitable for temporary situations and in situations where the top of the pile will always be in soil below groundwater level. All permanent timber piles driven in marine environments and where the butt (upper end) will be above groundwater levels require a preservative treatment to resist rot and insect and marine borer attack. Combinations of untreated timber topped by a metal shell filled with concrete are in common use in some areas of the U.S. where ground water is found to be within approximately 10 feet of the surface.

  • Timber Piles (Displacement Pile)

  • Timber Piles (Displacement Pile)

  • Timber Piles (Displacement Pile)

  • (Untreated timber with a concrete filled metal shell)

    Combination Piles

  • Concrete piles (Precast & Precast-Prestressed) are commonly manufactured in solid or hollow form and, square, octagonal or round cross section. Modern manufacturing employs a technique of pre-stressing which increases resistance to bending and reduces the amount of internal steel reinforcement required. This process involves the placing of special cables in the form used the make the piles. The cables are pre-tensioned before the placement of the concrete and, after the concrete begins curing, the tension is released. This has the effect of providing internal compressive forces in the pile and, increasing stiffness and toughness of the pile, permitting longer lengths and harder driving. Because of the inherent resistance