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Combined Vertical Steel Tank Foundation

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We have a situation where a 700 kip liquid load will be stored in each of (3) vertical 13' dia. cylindrical steel tanks.  The tanks are to be placed adjacent to each other in a line, so the common ring footing seems inadequate since the pressure on the soil will overlap, not to mention the lack of distribution achievable with a annular ring footing.

I'm thinking that the tanks should be set on square (or octagonal) frost walls, and the footing should extend outward from the walls perpendicular to the line of the three tanks as required to distribute the load onto the soil.  The walls would act as deep beams and help distribute the load to the mat foundation along the line of the tanks.

We're not equipped with FEA, so I'm looking for references on hand calculation methods.  I found a nice discussion of a nearly identical situation in Dunham's "Foundations of Structures."  It, however, is what I would consider an introduction.  I have a pre-FEA edition of Bowles' book on the way.  I have looked into AWWA publications after looking into the SEA archives.  D-100 lists foundation design of steel tanks, but it seems to be a small part of the publication and likely not much help in this case.  Two references listed in the archives on a related (single tank) project are: 1. Section 23 in "Structural Engineering Handbook" by Gaylord & Gaylord. 2. "Above Ground Storage Tanks" by Philip Myers.  I have not had a chance to check these last two out yet.

Any further leads would be most appreciated (and enjoyed)


Ed Fasula EIT

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