Single row pile groups are gaining popularity as foundation system for both buildings and bridges. They are a reasonable and economical solutions for structures with low vertical loads e.g. bridge abutments. The lateral resistance of a pile group is the result of contact pressure between the individual pile shafts and the soil. When designing this kind of structure, the estimation of displacements and bending moments is the main focus of the calculation. In most cases single piles are modeled by assuming a Winkler material. For their calculations, designers typically employ one of the commonly-used structural FEM codes (e.g. AxisVM, Fem-Design). On the other hand, advanced, truly 3D FEM packages (like MIDAS GTS, Plaxis 3D) are available, allowing for realistic modeling of the soil environment and soil-structure interaction. As an intermediate solution, packages based on traditional approaches are also available (GEO5, CGU). In this paper, results obtained using three different calculation methods and packages are compared.
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