Experimental investigation of reverse end bearing of offshore shallow foundations

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    Abstract

    Shallow skirted foundations can mobilize uplift resistance from end bearing in the short to medium term. However, uncertainty exists over the magnitude of reverse end bearing resistance compared with resistance in compression, and how this might be affected by a gap between the external face of the foundation skirt and the adjacent soil. The study presented in this paper explores this problem through centrifuge model tests, investigating the effect of skirt embedment ratio on (i) the magnitude of reverse end bearing capacity compared with compression capacity, (ii) the uplift displacement associated with spontaneous loss of suction during uplift, and (iii) the existence of a vertical gap along the external skirt-soil interface. The results show that (i) peak uplift capacity equivalent to compression capacity can be mobilized for a fully sealed foundation with an intact skirt-soil interface, (ii) suction required for reverse end bearing can be maintained through considerable foundation displacement, even for a low skirt embedment ratio, and (iii) the presence of a vertical gap along the external skirt-soil interface causes abrupt loss of suction beneath the top plate after minimal foundation displacement, with subsequent uplift capacity being markedly reduced.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1022-1033
    JournalCanadian Geotechnical Journal
    Volume50
    Issue number10
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2013

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