There are a few available methods to obtain load-settlement curve of a pile. Likewise, there are many methods to determine the ultimate pile capacity from a load-settlement curves. Although pile load tests have been widely used over the past decades, there are still many questions regarding its practice and interpretation. Frequently asked questions include: when does a pile test considered to have failed? From an economic point of view, a failure in pile load test can cost quite a lot of money. To what load can the pile be loaded till it is considered to have failed? Can a pile loaded to failure still be used as a working pile? Is pile driving analyzer (PDA) test reliable? Can PDA test replace static load test? Is it necessary to calibrate PDA test results with static load test results? Why is PDA test result interpreted as 1 dimensional wave and not 3 dimensional? What is bidirectional pile load test (also known as O’cell)? When should O’cell be used? Can a pile tested with O’cell be used as a working pile? What are the differences between kentledge load test, static load test with reaction piles and bidirectional pile load test? Do the three different pile tests produce the same results? This paper aims to shed light on these questions.

Keywords: Pile static load test, Dynamic load test, Bidirectional test, Ultimate pile capacity, Fail Pile

Full paper download:Gouw-180617-Pile Load Test FAQ-published