Experimental investigation of lateral loads on pile foundations during a seafloor slope failure



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This thesis deals with the problem of determining the magnitude of the lateral loading imposed on pile foundations which are subject to seafloor movements. This type of phenomenon occurs typically in the Gulf of Mexico, off the Louisiana coast where the Mississippi River discharges its sediments. A model investigation of this phenomenon was performed and the effects of varying the associated parameters involved during the testing program were evaluated. The magnitude of the experimental loading force is compared to an established prediction method. The data obtained from this investigation indicates that there is a slight increase in the soil loading force over that predicted by state of the art analysis. The results of this investigation will allow engineers to predict the magnitudes of the lateral loads imposed on pile foundations with more confidence.