Pipe-soil interaction testing in geotechnical centrifuges is used as a means of providing project-specific information to support the assessment of ‘friction factors’ and other geotechnical inputs to pipeline engineering. The centrifuge testing method allows moderate-sized soil samples (−0.01–1 m3) taken from the field to be used directly to determine site-specific behavior. The tests might involve simple uplift resistance testing for buried, backfilled pipelines or complicated installation and loading sequences designed to mimic the complex laying and loading histories relevant to laterally-buckling or storm loading of unburied pipelines. The paper explains briefly the principles behind centrifuge modeling and describes more fully how such testing should be used to gain benefit for a project.

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