As the concepts and design of modern structures continue to evolve, so too must the deep foundation systems on which they are founded upon. With the help of modern technology and material science, structural boundaries continue to be pushed and economic considerations are causing a trend toward the increased use of high-capacity piles. In response to the demand, helical piles have expanded beyond light and medium loaded structures and have been engineered to support heavily loaded structures subjected to both compression and tension.
There are several solutions engineers and contractors can choose from when a deep foundation is required. With a deep foundation the structure’s load is transmitted to soils that are deeper in the ground. A deep foundation is used when a shallow foundation is not possible, not practical, or will not carry the load. Examples are weak, unstable, or expansive surface soils. Two popular options for deep foundations are helical piles and drilled shafts, also known as drilled piers or caissons.
Consistently one of the busiest airports in the world, London Heathrow Airport consumes over 22 million liters (5.8 million gallons) of jet fuel per day, which is more than half of the amount used by the rest of the airports in the United Kingdom.1
Deep foundation pricing is multifaceted and a one price fits all approach can lead to unexpected costs. To break down the pricing, the following list can help provide a better understanding of the top 4 factors that can affect pile prices and why they are important pieces of information when looking for estimates:
A key benefit of helical piles is the ability to install them in environmentally sensitive areas. CHANCE helical piles are precisely engineered to create minimal disturbance to the soil itself during installation with the pitch and placement of the helices precisely calculated. Helical piles can also be installed using limited access installation equipment eliminating the need for damaging access roads and large equipment required for other foundation types.
Helical piles have been gaining notoriety as an ideal foundation solution for many types of trails, boardwalks, and walkways. The town of Ashland, Virginia sought a pedestrian and bicycle trail constructed to connect Carter Park to the existing Ashland trolley line trail. The trail is an easy half-mile walk along a very straight and level path. To connect Carter Park to the Ashland Trolley Line Park trail a boardwalk was needed over the steep embankment along Walder road. The Ashland Trolley Line Park Trail is a Greenway trail which is protected and managed for conservation and recreational purposes.
As with a foundation on a home, the foundation of a swimming pool can experience sinking due to unstable or poorly compacted soil. Ensuring a pool is constructed on a deep, lasting foundation will protect the owner investment and save them from costly future repairs. Whether you're a contractor building a backyard pool or an indoor aquatic center, starting on a firm foundation is key for the long-term success of any project, and there are a wide range of variables in the design process.
Helical piles are an established solution for foundation underpinning, but their applications are as far-reaching as the creativity of an engineer. Helical piles are typically associated with gravity load - force pushing down on the pile. In the project below, helical piles are utilized to support lateral loads, including wind and seismic loads.
In response to a demand for predictable high capacity foundation solutions, a fully grouted screw displacement pile was developed by CHANCE® engineers. Comprised of a centralized steel shaft and a patented displacement assemblies, the pile, known as the Drivecast™ screw displacement pile, is designed to create a cylindrical annulus around the central shaft that is continuously filled with grout from a gravity-fed reservoir at the surface.
Traditional foundation methods can be tricky to implement when access is limited, overhead clearance is especially low, or soil conditions call for strict weight limitations. For instance, on swampy ground or low-quality soil, the machines needed to install conventional foundations cannot always operate safely or maneuver effectively.