Engineered fills, including compacted granular fill and reinforced soil, are a cost-effective alternative to conventional bridge foundation systems; however, limited guidance exists on estimating the settlement and lateral deformation of these features under service conditions. Additionally, the stress distribution within these features is not well understood, leading to uncertainty in performance. To address these gaps, the Federal Highway Administration initiated a study to evaluate the service limit state (SLS) design and analysis of engineered fills for bridge support. This synthesis report is the product of an extensive literature search on current practices, available load tests, and numerical modeling results. It presents factors impacting the service limit of engineered fills and also provides a preliminary analysis on the reliability of existing prediction methods. The summarization of this work will assist in the continued development of research efforts to establish SLS design guidance for the use of engineered fills. This report will be of interest to engineers involved with bridge foundation research and design.
The full report is available online at http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/publications/research/infrastructure/structures/bridge/15080/index.cfm