Surface foundations are support elements that transmit the efforts generated by the superstructure to the foundation ground.
In the structure shown, the support capacity of the surface foundation submitted to a load of 500 kN is evaluated.
The numerical result of the carrying capacity obtained through the finite element method using the PLAXIS 2D software is compared with the analytical solution proposed by Terzaghi (1943).
Numerical analysis predicts approximately the same carrying capacity value as Terzaghi’s solution.
The 2D PLAXIS solution provides a lower result because it considers the soil as an elasto-plastic material, unlike the Terzaghi solution, which assumes the soil as a rigid-perfectly plastic material that fails abruptly when the bearing capacity is reached.
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