Ultimate lateral resistance to piles in cohesionless soils

Lianyang Zhang, Francisco Silva, Ralph Grismala

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

133 Scopus citations


Several methods are available for predicting the ultimate lateral resistance to piles in cohesionless soils. However, these methods often produce significantly different ultimate resistance values. This makes it difficult for practicing engineers to effectively select the appropriate method when designing laterally loaded piles in cohesionless soils. By analyzing the lateral soil resistance distribution along the width of the pile and based on the test results of model rigid piles in cohesionless soils collected from the published literature, a simple method is proposed for calculating the ultimate lateral resistance (including frontal soil resistance and side shear resistance) to piles in cohesionless soils. The calculated ultimate lateral resistance from the proposed method agrees well with that obtained from centrifugal tests of flexible model piles. Predicting the lateral load capacity of laboratory and field rigid test piles in cohesionless soils using the proposed method also yields satisfactory results.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)78-83
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Geotechnical and Geoenvironmental Engineering
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2005


  • Cohesionless soils
  • Lateral forces
  • Pile tests
  • Piles
  • Soil resistance

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geotechnical Engineering and Engineering Geology
  • Environmental Science(all)


Dive into the research topics of 'Ultimate lateral resistance to piles in cohesionless soils'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this