Batter Piles and the Seismic Performance of Pile-Supported Wharves

by W. H. Roth, Dames & Moore, Inc, Los Angeles, United States,
H. Fong, Dames & Moore, Inc, Los Angeles, United States,
C. de Rubertis, Dames & Moore, Inc, Los Angeles, United States,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Ports '92


This paper discusses the role of batter piles in the seismic performance of wharves, based on the results of a nonlinear soil-structure interaction analysis of a pile-supported wharf with a multilift retainment dike. When analyzed without the wharf structure, the dike was found to be susceptible to large shaking-induced lateral displacements. These displacements decreased markedly when the piles were included in the model. This behavior conflicts with the basic assumption of simplified structural models which rely on the dike to laterally support the piles. To be able to fulfill their dike-stabilizing function, however, the vertical piles needed to be laterally supported by batter piles, or otherwise anchored at the deck level. Because the shaking-induced forces transmitted to the batter piles were found to be quite large, a structural 'fuse' scheme was devised, which allows plastic yielding of the batter-pile connection. The first practical implementation of this scheme is currently under construction for the South Wharf at Pier J, Port of Long Beach. This wharf is being extensively instrumented to monitor its seismic performance.

Subject Headings: Piles | Levees and dikes | Seismic tests | Seismic effects | Ports and harbors | Structural models | Structural behavior | Earthquake resistant structures

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