Estimating Foundation Settlements in Residual Soils

by Ray E. Martin, (M.ASCE), Assoc.; Schnabel Engrg. Assocs., P.C., Richmond, Va.,

Serial Information: Journal of the Geotechnical Engineering Division, 1977, Vol. 103, Issue 3, Pg. 197-212

Document Type: Journal Paper


Settlement of shallow foundations supported on residual soils derived from igneous and metamorphic rock may be estimated by using pressuremeter modulus, Epm data obtained from in-situ pressuremeter tests. A profile of Epm is developed when the test is performed in a continuous manner below a foundation element. The modulus data developed by this test accounts for variations in soil structure and compressibility since it is performed in situ. A linear relationship is indicated between the log of Standard Penetration Test N value and pressuremeter modulus Epm. The pressuremeter modulus, Epm, is also shown to approximate the soil modulus of deformation, Es. Pressuremeter modulus profiles developed below several proposed structures are used along with a simplified distribution of vertical strain to estimate expected building settlements. Actual settlement of foundation elements in these structures indicates good correlation. The method of settlement analysis is outlined and an illustrative example is included.

Subject Headings: Soil settlement | Soil modulus | Foundation settlement | Soil pressure | Residual soils | Shallow foundations | Soil tests | Soil structures

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