A simplified model for the analysis of piled embankments considering arching and subsoil consolidation

Tuan A. Pham, Daniel Dias

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


An analytical model is presented for the design of geosynthetic-reinforced and pile-supported (GRPS) embankments in this paper. The originality of the proposed solution lies in the fact that it allows considering the influence of the subsoil consolidation on the soil arching and geosynthetic strain. A nonlinear function is implemented to describe the subsoil behavior with the consolidation process in a closed-form solution. A simplified approach is then presented to link the arching development with the subsoil consolidation. The arching theory is combined with the tensioned membrane theory and the soil-structure interaction mechanisms to provide a simple and suitable design approach that enables a realistic approximation for designing soil–geosynthetic systems. The analytical model is capable of performing an ultimate and serviceability limit state design of GRPS embankments. While current methods cannot fully address the important effects of the subsoil consolidation, the analytical results suggested that arching and differential settlements increase with an increase of the subsoil consolidation degree. The analytical model is compared to field measurements and five other design standards for several full-scale field tests to study its validity. The results showed a satisfactory agreement between the proposed model and measured data, and generally better results are obtained as compared with other design methods.
Original languageEnglish
JournalGeotextiles and Geomembranes
Early online date29 Dec 2021
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 29 Dec 2021


  • Consolidation
  • Geosynthetics
  • Ground reaction curve
  • Limit state design
  • Pile-supported embankment
  • Soil arching
  • Soil-structure interaction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Geotechnical Engineering and Engineering Geology


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