Popularly called as displacement piles, driven piles are used to transfer loads of the structures on to them seamlessly such that they support the bridges and heave infrastructures for decades. In fact, a foundation can be termed as pile when the depth of such a foundation is at least 3 times the breadth of the foundation. Driven piles are pre-determined long cylindrical structures that are essentially made of steel, timber or concrete. Robust machinery would be leveraged to drill the structures into the ground by applying pressure and through vibrations.
According to a study published by FHWA, driven piles are much more durable and stronger than their actual design capacity. With bundled benefits, many vendors and construction enterprises are opting driven piles for their giant structure. Let us understand the top 5 advantages of driven piles.
Seamless Installation: Driven piles can be installed without any hassles as they can be prefabricated off-site. This will be helpful in better and efficient installation.
Cost-Effective: Driven piles typically don’t fail as they are tested in the lab itself before the second level of load testing is done at the site. This helps the vendor in reducing the unwanted expenditure. Also, a precast driven pile would mobilize the higher values of shaft adhesion that will help a vendor use even shorter length piles while wet concrete would be used partially making the foundation even stronger.
Minimal Soil Disposal: Since the precast piles would be driven systematically, it wouldn’t lead to major soil accumulation, unlike traditional deep foundations where the soil needs to be removed the could result in damaging the actual design of the project.
Superior Strength: Driven piles are stronger compared to other types of foundation. They are designed to resist bends such that they withstand gusty winds, cyclones, and other natural calamities. Also, they displace the soil that would increase the bearing capacity. Further, they don’t bulge and maintain their shape even if additional piles are installed.
Adaptability: A vendor has an option to select the type of the pile, which would vary from steel to concrete to wood, based on his budget. Irrespective of its type, all types are designed to adapt to different types of soil. In the case of mixed soil types, an engineer might suggest leveraging multiple piles.
The Imperial College London and Zhejiang University China have jointly conducted a study to understand the behavior of driven piles and as to why they have been widely embraced by vendors. The study mentioned that the driven piles don’t tend to bend nor change their shape when different types of load tests were conducted making driven piles better option for deep foundations.