Critical length of encased stone columns

Marina Miranda, Jesús Fernández-Ruiz, Jorge Castro
2021 Geotextiles and Geomembranes  
Encased stone columns are vertical inclusions in soft soils formed by gravel wrapped usually with a geotextile. Their critical length is the one where further lengthening of the column provides a negligible improvement and it is therefore not effective to build columns longer than it. This paper aims to obtain common values of the critical length using simplified two-dimensional axisymmetric and full three-dimensional finite element analyses. A uniform soft soil layer with a linear elastic
more » ... ctly plastic behaviour is considered for the sake of simplicity. For the studied cases, the critical column length is around 1.3-2.5 times the footing diameter for encased stone columns, and slightly lower for ordinary stone columns, namely around 1.1-1.9. The critical length of the encasement is found to be slightly lower than the critical column length. The value of the critical column length is related to the extent of plastic deformation and that may be used to decide the column length in the design phase without the need of parametric analyses. As a first approximation, a general value of the critical column length of 2 and 2.5 times the footing diameter may be considered for ordinary and encased stone columns, respectively.
doi:10.1016/j.geotexmem.2021.05.003 fatcat:7jq72obxsnemne7f62axdu6tt4