Indian Geotechnical Journal

, Volume 49, Issue 2, pp 191–203 | Cite as

Analysis and Settlement of Partially Stiffened Single and Group of Two Floating Granular Piles

  • Vaibhaw GargEmail author
  • Jitendra Kumar Sharma
Original Paper


Ground improvement is a technique which a geotechnical engineer normally faces whenever soft soil is encountered. There is a need to look for some economic and feasible option for the provision of foundation in such cases, and one of the option available, is to use the granular pile (GP). The present paper analyzes a single partially stiffened floating and group of two partially stiffened floating GPs. Partial stiffening simply means that the material of the GP is replaced partially in the top region of granular pile by some material, having good mechanical properties i.e. higher deformation modulus e.g. geo-grids, stiffened deep cement mixing, etc. Mathematical formulation and its numerical solution is developed to incorporate the stiffening of granular pile at top portion in the analysis to study its behavior. The effect of stiffening factor i.e. ratio of modulus of deformation of stiffened to un-stiffened portion of GP and percentage length of stiffening i.e. ratio of length of stiffened portion to the total length of the pile are studied on various parameters such as settlement influence factor at top, settlement interaction factor, settlement reduction factor, normalized shear stress distribution along the length of the pile and percentage load transferred to base. As obvious, the settlement influence factor at top decreases with the increase in the stiffening parameters viz. stiffening factor and percentage length of stiffening.


Ground improvement Relative stiffness of granular pile Settlement influence factor at top Percentage length of stiffening of granular pile Stiffening factor 

List of symbols


Granular pile


Length of granular pile


Total number of elements of GP


Diameter of granular pile


Relative length of GP


Load on each granular pile of two pile group or single GP


Deformation modulus of un-stiffened portion of GP


Deformation modulus of stiffened portion of GP


Deformation modulus of soil

νs and νgp

Poisson’s Ratio of soil and GP respectively

Kgp = (Egp/Es)

Relative stiffness of granular pile


Pile base pressure


Depth of granular pile section taken from the top of granular pile

z* (= z/L)

Normalized depth of GP


Spacing between center to center of the piles


Normalized spacing center to center between piles


Settlement influence factor at top


Shear stress

τ*2F = τ(πdL)/P

Normalized shear stresses at various nodes of GP


Length of the pile stiffened from the top of the pile

η = Ls/L

Percentage length of stiffening


Stiffening factor


Normalized displacement of nodes of GP along its length


Normalized vertical displacement of soil


Vertical soil displacement


Settlement interaction factor for a group of two un-stiffened floating GPs


Settlement interaction factor for a group of two partially stiffened floating GPs


Settlement reduction factor for a group of two partially stiffened floating GPs

(Pb/P)2F × 100

Percentage load transferred to the base in a group of two partially stiffened floating GPs


Settlement influence factor for any depth of the GP


A square matrix for soil displacement influence coefficient

[1IFs] and [2IFs]

A square matrix for soil displacement influence coefficient for self and adjacent GP respectively

εv and σv

Axial strain and stress on an element respectively

Pit and Pib

Axial force on top and bottom of an element respectively

σit and σib

Axial stresses on top and bottom of an element respectively


Average axial stress on the element


Square matrices


Normalized displacement of top node of GP


Axial strain of first element of GP

εvj and εvi

Axial strain of jth and ith element respectively


Axial strain of the base of the GP


Square matrices



The author is privileged to express his sincere gratitude to Prof. M.R. Madhav (Civil Engineering Department JNTU, Hyderabad) and Prof. J.K. Sharma (Civil Engineering Department, Rajasthan Technical University, Kota) for his contribution in present work. His high appreciation, positive attitude have played an important role in the outcome of this research work.


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Copyright information

© Indian Geotechnical Society 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Rajasthan Technical UniversityKotaIndia

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