Date of Award


Document Type

Campus Access Thesis


Civil and Environmental Engineering

First Advisor

Paul H Ziehl


Eighteen finite element models were built using ABAQUS FEA version 6.10 in order to perform a parametric study used to determine the connection behavior of precast prestressed pile to cast in place bent caps for various pile sizes and bent cap embedment depths. Current construction practice in South Carolina involves a plain pile embedment to a depth equal to a single pile diameter with a construction tolerance of ±6.0 in. (152 mm). Finite element models that simulate piles with a square cross sectional dimension of 18, 20, and 24 inches were embedded into caps of variable dimensions and embedment depths. Caps dimensions were typical of the coastal region of the state. These piles were then subjected to a simulated "pushover" analysis to determine the behavior and moment capacity of each.

Results of the study show that as the pile size get larger, the moment capacity is increased at the sacrifice of ductility. Additionally, moment capacity and ductility were also increased with deeper cap embedment depths, however diminishing returns were observed at depths greater than one pile diameter embedment.