Plate Bearing Test

The Plate Bearing Test (or Plate Loading Test) is an in-situ field test used to determine the ultimate bearing capacity of rocks and soils and anticipated settlement beneath an imposed load.

Plate Bearing Test Service

It is routinely used in the design of temporary structures such as working platforms for piling rigs or pads for crane outriggers. Approximate equivalent CBR values can be derived from the Modulus of sub grade reaction by use of empirical relationships.

The Plate Bearing Test is carried out in accordance with BS 1377 Part 9: 1990 and consists of loading a steel plate and recording the settlement corresponding to each load increment.

The Plate Bearing Test is normally carried out at foundation level, either on the surface or in a shallow pit. Plates of varying sizes up to 720mm diameter are available. The loading plate is placed on the ground and connected via a load cell to a reaction load. Due to the larger size of the plate used (compared with a CBR test) this test is more suitable for testing larger aggregate backfills, however, it requires a larger reaction load. Typically, a minimum 15tonne tracked excavator or other suitable plant is required for us to use as a reaction load.

Our engineers will advise on the plate size required to match the design load and reaction load required (i.e. size of excavator).

We can typically complete six tests in a day, subject to site conditions and can provide results the following day.

Plate bearing test
Soil bearing capacity test by plate load test

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Plate Bearing Test

Example of a Plate Bearing Testing Report PBT

The Plate Bearing Test is an in-situ field test to determine the ultimate bearing capacity of rocks, soils and settlement beneath an imposed load