A railway on 4 m height embankment is being built in the south of Iraq. The railway alignment is extending on a compressible soil experienced impermissible settlement according to the results of soil investigation of the soil at the project site. A trial for reducing the settlement was done adopting sand piles. Nonlinear analysis was conducted to evaluate the settlement of soil before and after using the proposed technique.
The results indicated that without any improvement, the expected total settlement of the railway embankment on the compressible clay layer is 170.2 mm. By inserting granular piles of diameter 0.3 m, it was obtained settlement decreases to 88.7 mm with reduction being in range of ∼48%.