FHWA Pelican Creek Pile Load Test Underway
PND is currently aiding The Federal Highway Administration's (FHWA) Western Federal Lands Division in performing a static pile load in Yellowstone National Park in support of a new bridge at Pelican Creek. The static load test consists of three 42-inch-diameter steel pipe pile with two reaction piles driven to 160 feet and the test pile driven to 125 feet below ground surface. The required static load on the test pile was designated for a 2,000 kips compression force. The test pile was instrumented with strain gauges throughout the length of the pile at select elevations to aid in the measurement of unit skin friction during the static load test. Additional instrumentation to the test pile includes a liquid level gauge to measure pile deflection, load cells to measure the load, and jacks that exert the load on the piles.PND oversaw the construction of the load frame including the site preparation, installation of the piles, installation of the box beam, instrumentation cabling trenching and pulling, and interfacing with FHWA.
PND further performed the Pile Driving Analyzer (PDA) testing of all three piles with continuous monitoring until end-of-initial-drive and then completed restrikes after three days to measure setup. On completion of the load frame construction, a minimum 28-day setup wait period was performed to allow further setup of the piles. The static load test is set to be performed in mid-September 2017. A report of the test will be prepared on completion of the project.