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Historically it has always been difficult to sink foundation piles into soils containing irregular boulders or hard rock. Problems related to conventional piling in these difficult soil conditions include fracturing of the concrete column, shearing of the column or deflection after striking an unexpected boulder or rock formation. In every case where the column hasn¡¯t been successfully driven it must be abandoned and another pile has to be driven to replace the failed pile. It is estimated that the failure rate for conventional piling in hard soil and rocky conditions is around 20% (even higher in some places). Additional materials needed for replacement, hire of equipment and labour time could seriously affect the profitability of a contract or even result in a loss-making situation.

SEA Ltd has developed a total solution for piling in difficult soil and rocky conditions: Secure Earth Anchor Technology Piling System ("SEA-Tech").

SEA-Tech piling system uses a sacrificial cutting head, high tensile steel threaded tube and steel coupling connectors. Driven by a conventional drilling rig, grout is pumped through the tubular core to the cutting head then is forced out through a hole behind the cutting face. As the cutting head continues to descend it creates a bored cavity of which the free flowing grout, forced under pressure instantly fills. A load meter will indicate when a safe bearing load has been achieved. Once the desired load bearing depth has been reached the drill rig is then free to move on to drill the next pile with the contractor having assurance that the pile is to the correct depth, has no fractures, is straight and without suffering from deflection.

The use of SEA-Tech piling system offers many other advantages over other piling techniques: No removal of the drill or auger string required. No need for the installation and removal of a drill casing. No insertion of an anchor rod or reinforcement cage. No need for large amounts of drill waste removal. The SEA-Tech piling system uses larger diameter steel threaded tubes than those used in similar piling systems. The larger tube increases rigidity of the steel core section of the pile resulting in a stronger pile suitable for both tension and compression applications. Although the tube diameter is larger than those used in similar systems, the tube wall thickness is thinner, so metre for metre the material content is comparable. Due to the special method of manufacture no strength in the tube is lost, in fact it is substantially increased. Our special process used in the manufacture of the threaded tube greatly improves the material grain structure and tensile strength, therefore allowing more power to be used during installation and achieving greater load bearing properties. This is what makes SEA-Tech piling system better than any other on the market.

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