This paper investigates the static behavior of piles as well as their performance during earthquakes through “long duration impulse method” which is usually called the Rapid Loading Test. The paper confirms the applicability of Rapid Loading Test by considering the data of experiments carried out in three sites. In all the cases, Falling Mass method was employed to carry out the experiments. The experiment in Sakai-machi was conducted for the aim of this paper. The main purpose was to observe the applicability of the method for piles seated in different layers and to determine the set-up ratio of dynamic resistance and the effect of falling mass weight. For each case, static load-movement curves were derived by using Unloading Point Method and were compared with existing load-movement curves from Static Loading Tests carried out before. Applicability of Unloading Point Method was confirmed also. Because of the importance in design, the evaluation of Ultimate Load Capacity is discussed for every case study. Diameter Ratio Method is used as criteria for estimation of Ultimate Load Capacity.
The author proposes a Developed Signal Matching Method in this paper. It can improve the quality of the derived solutions and also can adjust the parameters, such as modulus k or damping factor c, characterizing the pile/soil model.
It is acknowledged that dynamic testing can evaluate the pile performance at the period of excitation similar to that induced by earthquakes. In this paper, the dynamic part of load-movement is obtained from comparison of maximum load and corresponding movement with load and movement at Unloading Point.
The design of axial load capacity in Japan and in Albania is based on empirical formula using SPT-value and on analytical formula using soil properties from “ex-situ testing”, respectively. A parametric study for concrete piles shows the difference between these two practices. Lateral load capacity of piles is very important. In seismically active zones like Japan and Albania, this can control the foundation design. Seismic design of piles based on the formula suggested by the Albanian Building Code and on Chang formulas suggested by the Japanese Geotechnical Society Regulation are thus compared.
In conclusion, this paper proposes some immediate changes in the Albanian Building Code in order to improve the quality of design and construction of pile foundation.