A parametric study of lateral load behaviour of single piles socketed into joint rock mass

W. L. Chong, A. Haque, P. G. Ranjith and A. Shahinuzamman

Rock mass properties, joint characteristics, pile stiffness and geometry play important roles in determining the pile head load-deflection behaviour of laterally loaded rock socketed piles. In this study, a comprehensive numerical modelling was undertaken using the three-dimensional distinct element code, 3DEC. The numerical model was initially calibrated against laboratory model pile load test results. The calibrated model was then extended to investigate the effect of rock properties such as modulus, cohesion and friction angle on the pile head-load deflection behaviour. In addition, this study examined the effect of pile socket length and joint characteristics such as dip angle and spacing. This study found that rock modulus, joint characteristics and pile geometry have significant effect on the lateral load capacity of single piles socketed into jointed rock mass.