Large Diameter Soil Pressure Sensors Employed in Dynamic Shallow Foundation Testing

  • Anne LemnitzerEmail author
  • Lisa Star
  • Lohrasb Keykhosropour
  • Antonio Marinucci
  • Steve Keowen
Conference paper


Measurements of distribution and magnitude of static and dynamic earth pressures resulting from self-weight and applied loading is essential to the design, behavior, and performance of many civil engineering-type structures involving soil-structure interaction. Advancements in testing and instrumentation have allowed researchers to improve upon the original, now classic analytical models to predict earth pressures acting on retaining walls, shallow foundations, and various deep foundation elements. Ideally, soil pressure instrumentation should be tailored towards the respective engineering application and comply with the stiffness of the structural system. In addition, it is desirable to provide sufficient sensing surface area to avoid pressure localization, and install the pressure surface flush with its surroundings to minimize arching effects. A new and simple load cell based pressure sensor with a diameter of 10 cm and a capacity of 144 kPa was developed, built, and deployed in a large-scale experimental investigation. Upon describing details pertaining to the design, fabrication, and calibration of the new sensor, results from the large-scale experimental investigation on dynamic shallow foundation performance is presented.


Pressure sensors Instrumentation Dynamic loading Shallow foundations 


  1. 1.
    Gazetas, G.: Foundation vibrations. In: Fang, H.-Y. (ed.) Foundation Engineering Handbook, 2nd edn., Chap. 15. Chapman and Hall, New York (1991)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Gillis, K., Dashti, S., Hashash, Y.: Dynamic calibration of tactile sensors for measurement of soil pressures in centrifuge. ASTM Geotech. Testing J. 38(3), 261–274 (2015)Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Lemnitzer, A., Hilson, C., Taciroglu, E., Wallace, J.W., Stewart, J.P.: Effect of backfill relative density on lateral response of a Bridge Abutment Wall. In: 15th World Conference on Earthquake Engineering, Lisbon, Portugal, 24–28 September 2012Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Lemnitzer, A., Keykhosropour, L., Kawamata, Y., Towhata, I.: Dynamic response of underground structures in sand: experimental data. Earthquake Spectra 33(1), 347–372 (2017)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Mylonakis, G., Nikolaou, S., Gazetas, G.: Footings under seismic loading: analysis and design issues with emphasis on bridge foundations. Soil Dyn. Earthquake Eng. 26, 824–853 (2006)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Pais, A., Kausel, E.: Approximate formulas for dynamic stiffnesses of rigid foundations. Soil Dyn. Earthquake Eng. 7(4), 213–227 (1988)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Star, L.M., Givens, M.J., Nigbor, R.L., Stewart, J.P.: Field testing of structure on shallow foundation to evaluate soil-structure interaction effects. Earthquake Spectra 31, 2511–2534 (2015)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Yilmaz, M., Schubert, S., Tinjum, J., Fratta, D.: Foundation soil response to wind turbine generator loading. In: Geo-Congress 2014 Technical Papers, pp. 1493–1502 (2014)Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Anne Lemnitzer
    • 1
    Email author
  • Lisa Star
    • 2
  • Lohrasb Keykhosropour
    • 1
  • Antonio Marinucci
    • 3
  • Steve Keowen
    • 4
  1. 1.Department of Civil and Environmental EngineeringUniversity of CaliforniaIrvineUSA
  2. 2.Department of Civil Engineering and Construction Engineering ManagementCalifornia State UniversityLong BeachUSA
  3. 3.V2C Strategists, LLCBrooklynUSA
  4. 4.AFB Engineered Test SystemsSimi ValleyUSA

Personalised recommendations