Pile Foundation

Pile Foundation

Foundations provide support to the structure and transfer the weight or loads from the structure to the soil, and therefore the layer at which the foundation transfers the load should have an adequate bearing capacity and suitable settlement characteristics.

Types of Pile Foundations

Types of the foundation are mainly divided into two types:

  • Shallow
  • Deep, so here pile foundation comes under deep foundations.

A deep foundation is a type of  pile foundation  which transfers structure loads to the soil farther down from the surface than a shallow  pile foundation does to a subsurface layer or a  small range of depths.

Pile Foundation Design Details

Here you can see different types of pile foundations listed based on their construction function and material used.

Driven or displacement piles

Driven our term displacement piles because their installation methods displaced laterally the soils through which they are introduced installation techniques dropping weight.

The dropping weight or drop hammer is the most commonly used method of insertion of displacement piles.

Replacement piles.

Formed by creating a borehole into which the pile is then cast or placed removed as part of the process. These are also known as bore piles.

End bearing piles.

In this type of pile, the loads passed through the lower tips of the pile that is the bottom end of the pile and rests on a strong layer of soil or rock.

Often, the pile rests at a transition layer of a strong and weak slayer. Consequently, the pile acts as a column and safely transfers the load to the strong layer.

Friction piles.

The friction pile transfers the load from the structure to the soil by the frictional force between the pile’s surface and the soil surrounding the piles, such a stiff clay, sandy soil, etcetera,


Compaction piles.

These are used to compact the loose granular soil, thus increasing their bearing capacity. The compaction piles don’t themselves carry the load.

 Tension or uplift piles.

These piles anchor down the structure, subjected to uplift due to hydrostatic pressure or overturning moment.

Anchor piles.

These piles provide Anchorage against the horizontal pull from sheep pulling or any other pulling.


 Batter piles.

These piles are used to resist large horizontal or inclined forces. This type is adopted in seashore structures.


Fender piles

These piles are used to defend water from structure against impact from ships or any other floating objects.


Sheet piles.

These Sheets are sections of sheet materials with interlocking edges driven into the ground to provide earth retention and excavation support.

Sheet piles are most commonly made of steel but can also be formed of timber or reinforced concrete. Sheet piles are commonly used for retaining walls, land reclamation underground structures such as car parks and basements in marine locations for riverbank protection, seawalls, cofferdams, etcetera.

Concrete piles.

These piles are made up of concrete and are further divided into precast piles and cast in situ piles.


The steel piles

These piles are made up of steel with different sections like H.


Timber piles.

These piles are generally made up of wood material. This type of piling system is widely seen in offshore structures.


Composite piles.

These piles are unique as the piles are cast with either steel and concrete or timber and concrete.


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