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Numerical Analysis of Settlement Response of Shallow Footing Subjected to Heavy Rainfall and Flood Events

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Document pages: 21 pages

Abstract: The USand many parts around the world have experienced prolonged periods of heavyrainfall, severe floods, and droughts over the past 50 years. This studyinvestigates the impacts of extreme hydrological events such as heavy rainfalland flood on the settlement behavior of continuous footing installed inunsaturated soil using a coupled Geotechnical-Hydrological finite elementsoftware, PLAXIS 2D. Initially, the effect of different degrees of saturationon the settlement behavior of the continuous footing of widths 1.5 m, 3.0 m,and 4.5 m was analyzed by applying a mechanical load. Then the settlement behavior ofthe footing was analyzed by applying heavy rainfall of intensity 102 mm day forsix days. Finally, the settlement behavior of the footing was analyzed byapplying a flood head of 2.5 meters for seven days. The results indicated thatthe wetting front movement during heavy rainfall and flooding led to theweakening of soil strength and stiffness and induced additional settlements.The additional settlement induced by the flood was significantly higher thanthe heavy rainfall. The differential settlement was higher when the rainfall wasapplied on one side of the footing. The rebound of the elastic settlement wasuniquely noticed when the flood head receded with time. The results indicatedthat not all the settlements were induced by the soil saturation but also dueto the hydrostatic loading due to the flood head. The settlements induced bythe flooding exceeded the allowable settlement of 25 mm, resulting in failure. Theseadditional settlements caused by heavy rainfall and flood will lead to poorserviceability of the structures and cause the failure of the footing.

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