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A Review of Failure Mechanism of Pile-supported Structures due to Earthquake Induced Soil Liquefaction

Review Paper

Manish Agrahari1 and Kajal Kumari2

1*Geotechnical Engineer, COWI, India

2Assistant Engineer, Department of Road Construction, Bihar, India

*Corresponding Author’s Email:

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The paper reviews the failure mechanism of pile-supported structures in liquefiable soil during earthquakes. Post-earthquake investigation of many pile-supported structures on liquefiable soil shows that despite the large factor of safety against bending due to lateral loads employed in their design, structures failed, e.g. failure of firehouse building at Kobe Port in 1995, Japan. It has also been observed that the middle piers of the bridges collapsed without significantly affecting the other parts. A number of experiments conducted by various investigators highlighted the importance of pile failure modes other than bending mechanism, especially, pile failure due to buckling. The initial codes of practice for pile design on liquefiable soils such as NEHRP 2000, Eurocode 8, JRA1996, and IS1893 focused only on bending failure, and failure due to buckling/dynamic amplification of pile due to the axial loading during liquefaction was neglected.

Keywords: Pile failure, liquefiable soil, bending, buckling, shear, dynamic amplification

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