What is mini piling?
Mini piles, or micropiles, are narrower in diameter than the standard piles used in construction. Mini pile diameters are usually in the range of 100mm to 600cm, while larger piling ranges from 600mm up to around 3500mm. For our projects, the arrangement of mini piles is precisely calculated to meet the soil conditions and load bearing requirements. Key factors are the number of mini piles used, their proximity to each other and the depth they go down to, which can be as much as 50m.
What are micropiles?
Micropiles and micropiling are exactly the same as mini piles and mini piling.
When do you need mini piles?
Mini piles are used to solve two problems. One is ground conditions, the other is restricted access. We work with our clients, construction architects, site managers and engineers to determine what kind of piling works your project requires. As a result, you will always be fully informed about the best options available to you.
Mini piles for different ground conditions
When there is a need to drill through tough ground materials such as masonry and concrete, it is much more efficient to bore smaller diameter shafts than bigger ones. The efficiency is not just in drilling but also in removal of the excavated ground material. In soft ground too, such as porous soils and silty clay, we use mini piles with a reinforced lining filled with concrete to stabilise the site. Mini piles are also a solution for sloping ground. We are highly experienced in operating on ground with limited load bearing capabilities, and we have a long track record of dealing with many other challenges presented by different sites.
Mini piling for restricted spaces
Mini piling is also essential for sites with low headroom and restricted access points. Both issues are common in projects which involve underpinning and strengthening foundations for supporting walls. Our specialist mini piling rigs are designed to operate with maximum efficiency where space is limited. They are smaller and lighter than the rigs used for unrestricted sites, with a lower height requirement and a more compact construction, and can even pass through internal door ways.
Mini piling for existing buildings
While many new projects, such as the construction of new retaining walls, often require mini piles, much of our mini piling work is for existing structures. Our work includes underpinning external and internal walls and beams to allow for extra loadbearing for height extensions and basements. With relatively low vibrations, mini piling rigs minimise any risk of damaging existing structures.
Mini piling techniques
At Performance Foundations we provide a comprehensive range of piling and mini piling services. We are experts in steel cased driven piling, which uses sections of steel tube driven into the ground by the mini rig hammer. The tubes are filled with concrete to form a load bearing pile. We also use auger bored mini piling which utilises an augur (a corkscrew-like drill) to bore into the ground and excavate the soil, stone or other ground material. The bore is then filled with concrete. A further common technique is continuous flight auger in which the auger screw has a hollow tube running through it. As the auger drills down it removes the ground material and concrete is pumped through the centre tube to fill the bore.
What is mini piling used for?
Our mini piling work includes a wide range of projects for residential property including basements, extensions and new builds. We also work on industrial and office property, as well as a range of infrastructure projects such as congestion relief works which have involved our mini rigs accessing the site through the London Undergound!