Analytical model for the design of piled embankments considering cohesive soils

T. A. Pham*, K. Wijesuriya, D. Dias

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Citations (Scopus)
23 Downloads (Pure)


Geosynthetic-reinforced and pile-supported (GRPS) systems already proved their good performance to support embankments constructed over soft soil. The load transfer mechanism in GRPS embankments depends on the complex interaction between the soil in place, the structural elements and, the embankment's soil type (cohesive or cohesionless). However, the cohesion influence of the embankment soil has not been well investigated as it is often not considered in the design of such systems. The main aim of this study is to present an analytical model for GRPS embankments that combine several phenomena such as the concentric arches model in cohesive fill soils, the hyperbolic model for the isochrone geogrid curve, and subsoil's consolidation. Three-dimensional numerical analyses are also conducted to evaluate the embankment soil cohesion influence on the soil arching. Both the numerical and analytical results agree that the cohesive embankment fills strengthen the soil arching effect and, increases the efficacy if compared with cohesionless embankment fills. A comparison of the analytical model with measured data and other design methods for full-scale field tests proved the proposed model efficiency. The proposed analytical model therefore can be applicable for GRPS embankments with cohesive and non-cohesive fill soils.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)369-388
Number of pages20
JournalGeosynthetics International
Issue number4
Early online date4 Oct 2021
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2022


  • cohesive soil
  • Geosynthetics
  • Limit equilibrium methods
  • numerical model
  • piled embankment
  • soil arching

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geotechnical Engineering and Engineering Geology


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