Graduation of Zhi Yang Fan

20 juni 2022 14:00 t/m 16:00 - Locatie: Faculty CiTG – Lecture Hall G | Zet in mijn agenda

Characterizing the soil uncertainty in the Port of Rotterdam for the probabilistic design of a pile foundation

  • Professor of graduation: Dr. A. Antonini

  • Supervisors: Dr. ir. O. Morales Napoles (TU Delft), Dr. ir. R.C. Lanzafame (TU Delft), Ir. K.J. Duffy (TU Delft) 


The Port of Rotterdam (PoR) is the largest port in Europe and in order to maintain its status, it would need to expand. For the expansion, an extensive survey of the subsurface is needed for the construction of new port areas and its geotechnical structures. As part of designing the geotechnical structures, the subsurface is often modelled as multiple homogeneous soil layers. However the soil properties are in reality heterogeneous and spatially variable. The spatial variability of a soil property is characterized by a mean, a standard deviation and the scale of fluctuation. The scale of fluctuation is the distance over which a soil property is significantly correlated and it is limited to the soil layer of that soil property. Therefore the change in the geological layering of the soil because of external depositional factors such as river, sea and wind can influence the scales of fluctuations and the resulting geotechnical design.

The objective of this thesis is to look at the spatial variability in the vertical direction of the Pleistocene sand from the Kreftenheye and Boxtel Formation in the Port of Rotterdam and see if the river Meuse has any influence on the spatial variability in the vertical direction. An additional question is asked if the spatial variability has any influence on the computation of the pile base capacity for a single foundation pile and what are the implications of the answer to that question. To answer these questions, four sites in the Maasvlakte, Botlek and Pernis were selected and the cone penetration tests (CPTs) taken at the twelve sites were used for this thesis. An empirical method which uses CPT data to identify soil layers was used to identify the Pleistocene sand layer in the CPT data. The first part of the thesis uses  the cone resistance data of the CPTs to estimate the spatial variability of the sites.

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