Geotechnical aspects of the Blue Piling Installation Technique

Design of a measurement plan and elaboration of results for prototype hammer on life size piles in Maasvlakte 2

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The energy market is growing and noise regulations for offshore foundation pile installation grow stricter. New initiatives arise to comply with the ongoing developments in the field, such as the BLUE Piling Technology under development by IQIP. Its features are presented as reduced underwater noise levels during installation, which is attibuted to the lower pile wall vibrations caused during driving. In this thesis, the design and execution of a field test is described, identifying the most important differences in geotechnical aspects between a prototype Blue Piling hammer and a conventional impact hammer, the IQIP Hydrohammer S-30. The results show that the Blue Piling hammer creates a response between pile and soil that is very different from a conventional impact hammer. The fundamentally different soil response led to pile plugging during the field test, affecting the stresses around the pile tip. This phenomenon is unlikely to occur during monopile installation, but scaling the test results requires further research.