Analytical solution for upheaval buckling of shallow buried pipelines in inclined cohesionless soil



Upheaval buckling of pipelines can occur under thermal expansion and differential ground settlement. Research on this phenomenon has usually assumed the pipes are buried in horizontal ground. For long-distance transmission pipelines across mountainous areas, the ground surface is commonly inclined. Based on the Rankine earth pressure theory and Mohr-Coulomb failure criterion, analytical formulae for calculating the peak uplift resistance and the slip surface angles for a buried pipe in inclined ground are presented in this paper. Analyses indicate that the slip surfaces in inclined ground are asymmetric and rotate towards the downhill side. Under a shallow burial depth, the failure plane angle is highly impacted by the ground inclination. When the embedment ratio (H/D) is more than 4, the influence of the ground slope on the failure plane angle is negligible. The peak uplift resistance reduces in inclined ground, especially when H/D is less than 1. Finally, a simple equation considering the impact of ground inclination is proposed to predict the peak uplift resistance.







利用莫尔圆极点法分析倾斜场地土体的应力状态, 基于Rankine土压力理论、摩尔库伦强度准则和极限平衡条件, 解析求解倾斜场地管道隆起时两侧的滑裂角, 并推导相应的土体隆起抗力峰值计算式.


1. 倾斜场地管道两边的滑裂面呈非对称破坏模式, 滑裂面整体向坡脚方向偏转, 且地表变形影响范围大于水平条件. 2. 管道埋深比(H/D)一定时, 滑裂面偏转程度随场地倾斜程度的增大而增大; 场地倾角一定时, 滑裂角偏转程度随H/D的增大而减小; 当H/D> 4时, 可以忽略场地倾角的影响. 3. 当H/D< 1时, 隆起抗力峰值随场地倾斜程度的增大而减小. 4. 现有的油气输运管道设计规范中, 均未考虑场地倾斜的影响, 且管线最小埋设深度仅0.5 m, 存在安全隐患.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.


  1. Bransby MF, Brunning P, Newson TA, et al., 2001. Numerical and centrifuge modelling of the upheaval resistance of buried pipelines. Proceedings of the 20th International Conference on Offshore Mechanics and Arctic Engineering.

  2. Chakraborty D, Kumar J, 2016. Uplift resistance of interfering pipelines buried in sand. Journal of Pipeline Systems Engineering and Practice, 7(1):06015002.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  3. Chen RP, Chen YM, Ling DS, 2000. Analysis of vertical pressure on buried pipeline with case study. Journal of Zhejiang University-SCIENCE, 1(4):414–420.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  4. Chen YM, Kong LG, Zhou YG, et al., 2010. Development of a large geotechnical centrifuge at Zhejiang University. Proceedings of the 7th International Conference on Physical Modeling in Geotechnics, p.223–228.

  5. Cheuk CY, White DJ, Bolton MD, 2008. Uplift mechanisms of pipes buried in sand. Journal of Geotechnical and Geoenvironmental Engineering, 134(2):154–163.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  6. DNV (Det Norske Veritas), 2007. Global Buckling of Submarine Pipelines Structural Design due to High Temperature/High Pressure. DNVGL-RP-F110, Oslo, Norway.

    Google Scholar 

  7. Ghaly A, Hanna A, Hanna M, 1991. Uplift behavior of screw anchors in sand. I: dry sand. Journal of Geotechnical Engineering, 117(5):773–793.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  8. Handy RL, 1985. The arch in soil arching. Journal of Geotechnical Engineering, 111(3):302–318.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  9. Hobbs RE, 1984. In-service buckling of heated pipelines. Journal of Transportation Engineering, 110(2):175–189.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  10. Huang B, Liu JW, Lin P, et al., 2014. Uplifting behavior of shallow buried pipe in liquefiable soil by dynamic centrifuge test. The Scientific World Journal, 2014:838546.

    Google Scholar 

  11. Huang B, Liu JW, Ling DS, et al., 2015. Application of particle image velocimetry (PIV) in the study of uplift mechanisms of pipe buried in medium dense sand. Journal of Civil Structural Health Monitoring, 5(5):599–614.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  12. Iskander M, Chen ZB, Omidvar M, et al., 2013. Active static and seismic earth pressure for c-φ soils. Soils and Foundations, 53(5):639–652.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  13. ISO (International Organization for Standardization), 2017. Petroleum and Natural Gas Industries-Pipeline Transportation Systems, ISO 13623. Geneva, Switzerland.

  14. Liu JW, 2017. Centrifuge Modeling on Uplift Behaviour of Shallow Buried Pipe in Inclined Sand. PhD Thesis, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou, China (in Chinese).

    Google Scholar 

  15. Maltby TC, Calladine CR, 1995. An investigation into upheaval buckling of buried pipelines—II. Theory and analysis of experimental observations. International Journal of Mechanical Sciences, 37(9):965–983.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  16. Mazindrani ZH, Ganjali MH, 1997. Lateral earth pressure problem of cohesive backfill with inclined surface. Journal of Geotechnical and Geoenvironmental Engineering, 123(2):110–112.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  17. Meyerhof GG, Adams JI, 1968. The ultimate uplift capacity of foundations. Canadian Geotechnical Journal, 5(4):225–244.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  18. Ng CWW, Springman SM, 1994. Uplift resistance of buried pipelines in granular materials. International Conference of Centrifuge 94, p.753–758.

  19. Nian TK, Han J, 2013. Analytical solution for Rankine’s seismic active earth pressure in c-ϕ soil with infinite slope. Journal of Geotechnical and Geoenvironmental Engineering, 139(9):1611–1616.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  20. Rao PP, Chen QS, Zhou YT, et al., 2016. Determination of active earth pressure on rigid retaining wall considering arching effect in cohesive backfill soil. International Journal of Geomechanics, 16(3):04015082.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  21. Richards Jr R, Elms DG, Budhu M, 1990. Dynamic fluidization of soils. Journal of Geotechnical Engineering, 116(5):740–759.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  22. Roy K, Hawlader B, Kenny S, et al., 2018a. Uplift failure mechanisms of pipes buried in dense sand. International Journal of Geomechanics, 18(8):04018087.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  23. Roy K, Hawlader B, Kenny S, et al., 2018b. Upward pipe-soil interaction for shallowly buried pipelines in dense sand. Journal of Geotechnical and Geoenvironmental Engineering, 144(11):04018078.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  24. Saeedzadeh R, Hataf N, 2011. Uplift response of buried pipelines in saturated sand deposit under earthquake loading. Soil Dynamics and Earthquake Engineering, 31(10): 1378–1384.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  25. Terzaghi K, 1943. Theoretical Soil Mechanics. John Wiley and Sons, New York, USA.

    Book  Google Scholar 

  26. Trautmann CH, O’Rourfce TD, Kulhawy FH, 1985. Uplift force-displacement response of buried pipe. Journal of Geotechnical Engineering, 111(9):1061–1076.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  27. Vermeer PA, Sutjiadi W, 1985. The uplift resistance of shallow embedded anchors. Proceedings of the 11th International Conference on Soil Mechanics and Foundation Engineering.

  28. Wang J, Haigh SK, Forrest G, et al., 2012. Mobilization distance for upheaval buckling of shallowly buried pipelines. Journal of Pipeline Systems Engineering and Practice, 3(4):106–114.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  29. White DJ, Barefoot AJ, Bolton MD, 2001. Centrifuge modelling of upheaval buckling in sand. International Journal of Physical Modelling in Geotechnics, 1(2):19–28.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  30. Zhu HX, Randolph MF, 2010. Large deformation finite-element analysis of submarine landslide interaction with embedded pipelines. International Journal of Geomechanics, 10(4):145–152.

    Article  Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information



Corresponding author

Correspondence to Ji-ying Fan.

Additional information

Project supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Nos. 51988101 and 51178427), the Natural Science Foundation of Zhejiang Province (No. LCZ19E080002), and the Fundamental Research Funds for the Central Universities (No. 2019FZA4016), China


Bo HUANG and Dao-sheng LING designed the research. Jing-wen LIU and Ji-ying FAN did the theoretical derivation and wrote the first draft of the manuscript. Bo HUANG and Ji-ying FAN helped to organize the manuscript, and revised and edited the final version.

Conflict of interest

Bo HUANG, Jing-wen LIU, Ji-ying FAN, and Dao-sheng LING declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this article

Huang, B., Liu, Jw., Fan, Jy. et al. Analytical solution for upheaval buckling of shallow buried pipelines in inclined cohesionless soil. J. Zhejiang Univ. Sci. A 22, 369–381 (2021).

Download citation

Key words

  • Shallow buried pipe
  • Upheaval buckling
  • Inclined ground
  • Analytical formulation
  • Soil deformation mechanism


  • 浅埋管道
  • 竖向屈曲
  • 倾斜场地
  • 解析解
  • 破裂模式

CLC number

  • TU413