Innovative Foundation Designs for Permafrost Conditions in the Arctic

by Carlos P. Bastidas, Exploration Alaska Inc, United States,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Foundation Engineering: Current Principles and Practices


This paper describes the engineering solution to restore the structural properties of permafrost at a site location in the Western Operating Area of the Prudhoe Bay Field. Steel pile supports for new buildings at a low pressure separation plant had been designed based on the expected soil (permafrost) properties of the site. However, a water injection well in the site vicinity, in service longer than expected, had damaged the founding soil. Field surveys showed the permafrost to be warmer than anticipated, with reduced capacity to carry building loads. This paper reports on the implemented approach, which restored the permafrost by reversing the warming trend. It used the arctic environment and a simple non-mechanical method to achieve the objective.

Subject Headings: Foundation design | Innovation | Permafrost | Building design | Soil pressure | Steel piles | Load bearing capacity | Pile tests | Arctic

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