Publication Abstract

Proceedings of the 45th Annual Conference on Deep Foundations, 2020 - ONLINE , (DFI)

Case Study: The Use of Post Tensioned Piles for Wind Turbine Foundations
Mohamed Alrowaimi, PhD, PE, Ahmad Mohamed, PhD, Amr Sallam, PhD, PE

Renewable energy, in the form of wind and solar, has emerged as main source of energy in the modern society. The wind industry has substantially grown over the last two decades to become a key player in providing energy to public. Wind turbines are getting larger, taller, and more efficient every year. The foundation is a major component of the wind turbine system. The wind turbine foundation must provide short and long-term stability for the overall turbine to allow continuous and safe turbine operation for energy production. The turbine serviceability and stability requirements must be geotechnically and structurally satisfied. In North America, major foundation types currently utilized in the wind industry include gravity spread foundation, mono pier foundation, and pile foundation. In this case study, a Post Tensioned Pile Cap (PTPC) foundation was used to support a 3.15-3.4 Megawatt turbine with 125M Rotor supported on 87.5M-hub-height tower. Soil anchors in the form of Auger-Pressure-Grouted-Displacement (APGD) piles and Continuous Flight Auger (CFA) piles were utilized. Four distinct subsoil conditions were identified, and for which four pile designs were adapted. Due to the occasional encounter of stronger soils at 50 to 55 feet (15.2 to 16.7 m), shorter pile design was preferred. To satisfy the design uplift load, pile post grouting were utilized to increase the shaft capacity of the piles. In this paper, the pre-production pile load test program will be described. The pile load test procedure, analysis, and results will be presented. A discussion will be provided, which led to the selection of the optimum pile design to support the high tension loads taking into consideration pile length limitations.

 article #3680; publication #1073 (AM-2020)