Ali Ameli, PhD, PE, Currently Geo Engineering Ltd., Vancouver, BC, Canada.
Design loads are limited for piles relying upon toe stresses in rock due to uncertainty about the rock quality over the whole pile diameter because of rock mass properties or construction effects. The paper discusses the use of video images to evaluate rock quality at the bottom of piles socketed into graniodorite bedrock in a steel pipe pile project. Skillful interpretation was required to assess the 3D properties of the rock from video images. It is necessary to observe the rock mass characteristics near the project site for better perception of the rock features from the images. Video image interpretation skills were established by the evaluation of the cores drilled under the socket base and the results of pile loading tests. Correlations were found between rock appearance in the images and the rock socket drilling records. Rock socket acceptance criteria were developed through monitoring the drilling operations for the specific site procedures. Video images then served as one of the quality-assurance tools together with probing and pile loading test. Lessons and methods learned from video inspection in this project could be used to evaluate rock quality in similar cases.
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