Analysis of Downdrag on Pile Groups by the Finite Element Method

Sangseom Jeong, Sooil Kim, Jean Louis Briaud

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22 Citations (Scopus)


The downdrag on friction and endbearing pile groups was investigated, based on a numerical analysis. The emphasis was on quantifying the reduction of downdrag on pile groups, with a flexible pile cap, due to group effect. The case of a single pile and, subsequently, the response of groups were analyzed by developing interaction factors obtained from a three-dimensional nonlinear finite element study. Based on a limited parametric study, it is shown that the downdrag on piles in a group is much less than the downdrag on a single pile and is highly influenced by the group spacing, total number of piles, and the relative position of the piles in a group. In light of all these influencing parameters, a simple method is recommended for square groups of 9-25 piles with spacing-to-diameter ratios of 2.5 and 5.0 for downdrag loads.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)143-161
Number of pages19
JournalComputers and Geotechnics
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1997

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This study was supported in part by the National Cooperative Highway Research Program (NCHRP) and Korea Science and Engineering Foundation (KOSEF).

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geotechnical Engineering and Engineering Geology
  • Computer Science Applications


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