SPR 772 Cost-Effective Screening, Assessment, and Repair of Timber Piles

The problem statement and research objectives presented below are modified versions of the text submitted during the South Carolina Department of Transportation (SCDOT) research idea-gathering process. Changes reflect recently acquired information and the proposal team’s current thinking. There are approximately 75,000 timber piles supporting South Carolina’s bridges. Many of these piles are decades old. Recent pile failures in South Carolina highlight the need for efficient and effective screening, assessment, and analysis techniques. The proposed research will consider existing and novel pile assessment technologies, including stress wave-based methods, ground penetrating radar, thermography, and automated interpretation of hammer sounding. These will be compared to ‘ground truth’ data from borings and removed piles that are evaluated in structures laboratories. Load tests will link the assessment results to the likely capacity of piles having various types and amounts of deterioration. The research objectives are to: (1) identify the causes, factors, and types of timber pile degradation in SC bridges; (2) evaluate existing and novel means of screening, assessing, and analyzing timber piles; and (3) evaluate the cost- and technical-effectiveness of timber pile screening, assessment, and analysis methods for SC.


    • English


    • Status: Active
    • Funding: $850034
    • Sponsor Organizations:

      South Carolina Department of Transportation

      955 Park Street
      P.O. Box 191
      Columbia, SC  United States  29202-0191
    • Performing Organizations:

      Clemson University

      110 Lowry Hall
      Box 340911
      Clemson, SC  United States  29634-0911
    • Principal Investigators:

      Ross, Brandon

    • Start Date: 20240515
    • Expected Completion Date: 20271114
    • Actual Completion Date: 0

    Subject/Index Terms

    Filing Info

    • Accession Number: 01906723
    • Record Type: Research project
    • Source Agency: South Carolina Department of Transportation
    • Files: RIP, STATEDOT
    • Created Date: Feb 1 2024 9:50AM