Mechanical behaviour of energy piles. Experimental studies




Energy pile, Thermo-mechanical behaviour, Full-scale test


The paper focuses on experimental studies on the mechanical behavior of energy piles, subjected to thermal and mechanical loads simultaneously. The PITERM Spanish project (2011-2013) is presented and summarized, consisting of an experimental pre-cast driven pile in Valencia, subjected to mechanical and thermal loads, simulating its use working as a cooling system, during summertime. A brief review of experimental tests carried out recently in different countries is included. The results of these tests meet those obtained in the PITERM project. All of them confirm the conceptual model representative of a thermo-elastic behavior, for the levels of thermal loads expected in the actual applications. Additionally, they reveal the importance of the ground geotechnical profile and the conditions of restriction at toe and head of the pile. A basic overview of physical modeling tests in geotechnical centrifuge and some notes on the latest research lines at the international level are also included.


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