Design of Helical Piles


In the last few decades, helical piles have gained popularity in North and South America. They have received particular attention by researchers and industry to understand their performance under various loading conditions. The proposed course is intended to develop understanding of theories and procedures required to design helical piles subjected to static and cyclic loads, using AASHTO and CHBDC design codes. By the end of the course, attendees will gain knowledge on the different screw pile systems, material specifications, performance in different soil conditions, to understand the installation technique and subsequent effects and therefore to identify the helical pile’s suitability for the different applications and soil conditions.

Detailed design procedures will be given for helical piles subjected to compressive, pullout and lateral loads. Structural and geotechnical design satisfying SLS and ULS conditions utilizing available international design codes and manuals will be presented. Design of pile groups will be also covered.

Finally, the most recent advances in the design of helical piles will be discussed. This includes the state-of-the-art composite helical-micropile systems currently practiced in North America.


Specifically, the following topics will be covered:

  • Introduction
    • Background
    • Installation techniques and effects
    • Load transfer mechanism
  • Design of statically loaded piles
    • Single pile compressive, pullout and lateral capacity
    • Piles in cohesive and cohesionless soils
    • Empirical correlations ▪ Soil design parameters
    • Design of pile groups
    • Ultimate Limit State vs Working Stress Design
  • Special loading conditions
    • Cyclic axial and lateral performance of helical piles
    • Piles in cohesive and cohesionless soils
  • Current design procedures and guidelines
    • Design guidelines as per the Canadian Foundation Engineering Manual, Canadian Highway Bridge Code, AASHTO and FHWA design manuals
  • Numerical simulation
    • Recent advances and case histories

Who should attend

This course is designed for Geotechnical engineers, project engineers, consulting engineers and technicians interested in expanding their knowledge of helical piles.

Bio- A. Fahmy

Ahmed Fahmy M.Sc., Ph.D., P.Eng.
Intermediate Associate, Geotechnical & Mining
30 Forensic Engineering

Dr. Fahmy is a current Intermediate Associate at 30 Forensic Engineering, Toronto, Canada.

Dr. Fahmy has a vast practical experience working with several employers in Canada and overseas including 30 Forensic Engineering, Golder Associates Ltd., Geoterre Ltd., Geo-consultants and Dar Al Handasah Consultants. He provided engineering support services and was involved in the design of a wide variety of large scale projects.

In addition to his practical experience, Dr. Fahmy served as assistant professor and research associate at the University of Western Ontario where he taught graduate and undergraduate level geotechnical engineering design courses. He also offers specialized geotechnical workshops for practicing Engineers in Canada.

Dr. Fahmy is an active member of the Executive Education committee of the Canadian Geotechnical Society and the Canadian Society of Civil Engineers. He received a number of awards, has a number of publications and served as a reviewer for several geotechnical conferences and Journals.

Bio-M. Meckkey, M.E.Sc, PhD. P.Eng

M. Meckkey, M.E.Sc. Ph.D., Professional Engineer
(Canada-ON, BC, NFL, YN, NWT, NU)
Senior Geo-structural Engineer
Kitchener, ON, Canada

Dr. El-Sharnouby is a senior geostructural engineer of subsurface infrastructure, responsible for the design, development and advancement of structural and geotechnical design of buried steel bridges/tunnels for transportation, mining and forestry applications including, reclaim, escape and conveyer tunnels, crusher walls, ventilation shafts, grade separations, and water crossings. Dr. El-Sharnouby’s 15+ years experience includes design, and construction of marine terminal infrastructure, linear infrastructure, surface mining, machine foundations, geo-dynamic engineering, computational geomechanics and sustainability. He serves as a technical committee member on the Canadian Highway Bridge Design Code and Canadian Engineering Foundation Manual. He has numerous technical publications in a wide variety of soil-structure-interacion topics. His global expertise extends from North America, Middle East, to Europe.

Dr. Meckkey earned his bachelor degree from the Alexandria University, Egypt. He then earned his master and PhD from the University of Western Ontario. He currently resides in Ontario, Canada.