Use of Piles as Isolation Barriers

by Samson Liao, (A.M.ASCE), Asst. Engr.; Dames & Moore, Cranford, N.J.,
Dwight A. Sangrey, (M.ASCE), Assoc. Prof.; Civ. and Environmental Engrg., Cornell Univ., Ithaca, N.Y.,


Serial Information: Journal of the Geotechnical Engineering Division, 1978, Vol. 104, Issue 9, Pg. 1139-1152


Document Type: Journal Paper

Abstract: An acoustic model employing sound waves in a fluid medium was used to evaluate the use of rows of piles as passive isolation barriers to reduce ground vibrations. The results of experimental measurements indicate that the effectiveness of the barriers is highly dependent on the mismatch between pile and soil material properties, with greater mismatch resulting in greater effectiveness. Pile-to-pile aperture spacing of 0.4 times the wavelength was found to be the upper bound for a barrier to have some effectiveness, and a minor dependence of effectiveness on the pile diameter was also observed. The extrapolation of the model studies to actual field problems is considered.

Subject Headings: Piles | Material properties | Soil properties | Model analysis | Field tests | Acoustic techniques | Base isolation | Highway barriers

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