Engineers Australia

Arching in ground improvement

Babak Hamidi, Hamid Nikraz and Serge Varaksin


In some soil improvement techniques, such as dynamic replacement, stone columns, controlled modulus columns, jet grouting, compaction grouting and deep soil mixing, the ground properties are enhanced by introducing columnar inclusions to the required depths. Regardless of the technique used it is evident that the stiffness of the in situ soft soil and the inclusions are not the same, and the load distribution between the columns and soil must be determined as part of the process of the ground improvement solution. The distribution of load is a function of a number of parameters. This paper will discuss the mechanism of load transfer in the ground, will review a number of techniques for determining the stress and load distribution and will identify the parameters that affect the load distribution between the soil and columns.