A.H. Beck was contracted to complete the installation of the drilled shaft load test program for the new Ship Channel Bridge located in Harris County, Texas. The data obtained during the load test program was used to optimize the design of the new bridge structures and to develop an independent drilled shaft installation specification to be utilized for production installations. The load test program consisted of the installation of two instrumented shafts, measuring 96 inches in diameter and 225 feet in length (one near the north side pylon and one near the south side pylon) and one shaft measuring 48 inches in diameter and 120 feet in length along the north approach.
The 96- inch, 225-foot shafts were considered the deepest shafts installed in Texas at the time. A short permanent casing was utilized to segregate contaminated soils in the upper approximately 35 feet. The shafts were excavated using bentonite slurry with high torque equipment manufactured by A.H. Beck. Each test shaft included Sonic Caliper Testing, Crosshole Sonic Logging (CSL), Thermal Integrity Profiling (TIP) and load testing utilizing the Osterberg Cell Load Test (O-Cell).
OWNER: Harris County Toll Road Authority
GEOTECHNICAL ENGINEER / PROJECT MANAGER: Fugro