Modulus of subgrade reaction that varies with magnitude of displacement of cohesionless soil

Avci B., GÜRBÜZ A.

ARABIAN JOURNAL OF GEOSCIENCES, vol.11, no.13, 2018 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 11 Issue: 13
  • Publication Date: 2018
  • Doi Number: 10.1007/s12517-018-3713-1
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Keywords: Modulus of subgrade, Finite element method, Plate load test, Foundation, Displacement
  • Gazi University Affiliated: Yes


Modulus of subgrade reaction is one of the required design parameters in any structural analyses of shallow foundations. However, the constant values of modulus of subgrade reaction that are determined from either from literature studies or the results of plate load tests, regardless of magnitude of soil's displacement under design loads, have been used in structural designs of foundations. In this study, the results of 43 published full-scale field plate load tests in cohesionles soils were gathered to expose any variation in the values of modulus of subgrade reaction as soil's displacement increases. Extensive finite element (FE) analyses were carried out while the results of FE analyses were compared with actual measured results of field load tests. The results of analyses indicated that both the modulus of subgrade reaction decrease with increase in magnitude of displacement of soils and internal forces of a design of structural frame is higher with the values of modulus of subgrade reaction that are sensitive to soil's displacement are implemented into analyses. Therefore, structural dimensions of any structure with the constant values of modulus of subgrade reaction would not be a precise engineering solution.