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Integrity Assessment of Deep Foundations: Principles and Limitations

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Instructor Information: Garland Likins, P.E., M.ASCE

Course Length: 1.5 Hours

This webinar was co-sponsored by ASCE's Geo-Institute and ASCE Continuing Education.

Purpose and Background

This webinar will review several commonly used techniques including their operating principles and testing preparation requirements.

Many engineers are forced to use deep foundations due to prevailing poor soil conditions. Cast-in-place foundations installed by drilling, such as drilled shafts or augercast piles, often result in questions about their structural integrity. Studies as well as failed static tests reveal a significant percentage of foundation shafts with defects that are of concern. Various non-destructive testing (NDT) inspection methods are available to assess the evaluation of structural integrity. Several commonly used techniques will be reviewed including their operating principles and testing preparation requirements. The applications will be illustrated by several case histories, demonstrating their strengths and effectiveness, as well as their limitations. Applications will include assessing unknown foundations.

Primary Discussion Topics:

  •  Need for testing
  •  Available pile testing methods
  •  Testing preparation requirements
  •  Methods of analysis and interpretation of results

Learning Outcomes

  • Working knowledge of the methods available to assess integrity of drilled deep foundations
  • Understand which methods are most applicable to drilled shafts and to auger-cast piles
  • Understand the requirements for the testing and limitations

Webinar Benefits

  • Understand the principles underlying various integrity assessment options
  • Learn the foundation preparation requirements for the testing
  • Understand basic interpretation of the measurements obtained
  • Find out about analysis and interpretation methods

Intended Audience

Civil engineers seeking to understand various options available to assess the quality of foundations (either recently installed or in existing structures) will benefit from this webinar. This webinar is intended for both private and public sector engineers who design or specify deep foundations.

Webinar Outline

  • The need for testing
  • Testing by available pile accessibility
  • Low strain integrity testing (pulse echo, shape estimation)
  • Pile installation testing for augercast piles
  • Crosshole sonic logging and single hole sonic logging
  • Thermal integrity profiling
  • Testing unknown foundations: Parallel seismic and parallel inductive testing