The lateral spreading of the ground due to liquefaction during earthquakes may considerably damage the embedded piles, which is an important issue in the seismic design of pile foundations. In this paper, nonlinear pseudostatic analyses were performed for the responses of piles subjected to actions of laterally spreading ground, which were modelled as flow displacement and flow pressure, respectively. The former is a displacement-based approach, in which the free-field ground displacement profile is assigned to the pile-soil interaction system; while the latter is a force-based approach, which regards the actions of laterally spreading ground as flow pressure and directly applies it to the pile. The concept of the Winkler foundation was utilized to account for the interaction between pile and soil. The soil springs with elastic-plastic p-y curves were used to describe the relationship of soil reaction versus lateral displacement around the pile. The distributed plastic hinges were deployed to simulate the possible flexural failure of the pile. One of the pile failure cases caused by liquefaction-induced lateral spreading in the 1995 Kobe Earthquake was adopted for case study. The analyzed pile response to flow displacement and flow pressure was compared with the field observations, and the validity and capability of both approaches were accordingly discussed. The influence of axial load on laterally loaded piles, namely, the P-delta effect was also examined. These results help to reasonably assess the performance of piles subjected to lateral spreading of liquefied ground.
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