Field Validation of Effective Dispersion Analysis of Reflections, a New Method for Nondestructive Estimation of Pile Depth

Several methods have been developed for nondestructive pile depth estimation over the past few decades, with impact-based methods remaining popular because of their ease of application. Sonic-echo techniques rely on generating nondispersive longitudinal waves by impacting the pile top and subsequently picking peaks that correspond to initial and reflected wave arrivals. Unfortunately, pile tops are often inaccessible for in-service foundations and alternate impacting techniques result in signals for which time domain peak picking can be difficult. Pile sides are often easily accessible, but side impact generates highly dispersive flexural waves resulting in complicated waveforms for which analysis is not straightforward. Existing methods to process dispersive flexural waves rely on signal processing based methods and do not explicitly incorporate the physical dispersion properties of the system, resulting in large errors. To address the current limitations, a new method called effective dispersion analysis of reflections (EDAR) was recently developed for pile length estimation. EDAR provides a simple and robust technique to analyze dispersive flexural waves generated from side impact for which time domain processing is not applicable. In this paper, length estimation through EDAR is explained for longitudinal and flexural waves using synthetic bar and Timoshenko beam models. Field validation for two types of pile, concrete filled steel tubes and prestressed concrete, with varying cross sections and embedment are presented. EDAR resulted in pile length estimates within 10% error.


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  • Accession Number: 01763420
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Report/Paper Numbers: TRBAM-21-02986
  • Files: TRIS, TRB, ATRI
  • Created Date: Dec 23 2020 10:59AM