Get assistance! DeepFND & HelixPile Software Q&As

In this section you can find a series of Frequently Asked Questions from our clients worldwide.

If the answer to your question is not included here, or if you need additional information, feel free to Contact Us


DeepFND/HelixPile Software - Training Videos and Materials

Training Videos & Video Examples with instructions: ACCESS  PAGE
Examples, Theory & Users Manuals, PDF Files: ACCESS PAGE

Frequently Asked Questions:

Pile Types, Project Types & Design Codes

DeepFND software can be used for the design of any foundation pile and support system. DeepFND implements all approved scientific methods for the design of deep foundation piles. With DeepFND we can design drilled piles, driven piles, CFA piles,caissons, drilled-in-displacement piles, micropiles and helical piles.

  • Drilled Piles
  • Driven Piles
  • Drilled-In-Displacement Piles
  • CFA Piles
  • Micropiles
  • Caissons
  • Helical Piles

On the other hand, both our foundation pile design software programs - DeepFND and HelixPile - can design helical piles (steel pipes, square solid and square hollow sections with helical plate configurations).

Non-Helical Pile Types in DeepFND.JPG

Figure: Non-Helical Pile Types (DeepFND)

Helical Pile Types in DeepFND and HelixPile.JPG

Figure: Helical Pile Types (DeepFND and HelixPile)

DeepFND and HelixPile are two similar, powerful software programs for the design and evaluation pile foundations. The programs can perform structural and geotechnical, lateral, and axial analysis of any foundation pile (single piles, pile groups and pile rafts).

The only difference between the two programs is the available pile types. DeepFND can design all pile sections and pile types (helical and non-helical – drilled, driven, caissons, micropiles, CFA piles and more), whereas HelixPile can design only helical piles.

Our foundation piles design software DeepFND and HelixPile can perform axial and lateral analysis of any pile type. The programs can calculate the pile shaft resistance and the bearing capacity of the piles, taking into consideration the pile installation method. 

In addition, the software can do lateral pile analysis, calculating the pile displacements, moment and shear diagrams for any applied load combination on the pile head.


DeepFND and HelixPile software have implemented several structural codes used worldwide. The software do all calculations according to the selected standard and calculate the pile moment and shear capacities. All structural design checks and equations can be included in the software reports.

Lateral Pile Analysis Results.png

Figure: Pile Moment, Shear and Displacement Diagrams - DeepFND

Our foundation pile design software can design single foundation piles, pile groups and pile rafts. 

The following pile cap shapes are available:

  • Rectangular Pile Caps
  • Triangular Pile Caps
  • Circular Pile Caps
  • Hexagonal Pile Caps
  • Octagonal Pile Caps
  • User-Defined Perimeter Pile Caps
  • Pile Rafts

The user can create a concrete cap of any shape and define the pile configuration (pile locations and structural sections). The program can calculate the load that is transfered on each pile, considering the pile location and analyze all piles. 

Rectangular Cap with concrete piles DeepFND.png

Figure: A Rectangular Cap with Concrete Piles - DeepFND

Circular Cap with helical piles DeepFND HelixPile.png

Figure: A Circular Cap with Helical Piles - DeepFND and HelixPile

The following interational structural design codes are implemented in our software and allow the design of any pile structural section (Steel, Concrete, Timber Sections):

ACI 318-11 and 318-19 (Reinforced Concrere Members)

ASD 1989 (Allowable Stress Design - Steel Members)

AASHTO LRFD 13th Edition (Steel Members)

AISC 360 and 360-Allowable (2010 and 2016)

Australian Standards (AS 3600, AS/NZS 4100)

EUROCODE 2, 3 and 8 Specifications - Several national annexes are implemented

Structural codes in DeepFND.JPG

DeepFND and HelixPile software programs implement the load combinations according to the following geotechnical codes:




European Codes (DIN, BS, XP94, DM, DA)

Chinese Standards (CN)

Eurocode 7 Load Combinations

Geotechnical codes in DeepFND.JPG

Our development team we can implement specific codes upon request. All we need from the client is a copy of the code recommendations in pdf format. Typically, the code implementation can be finished within some working days.

In order to change the software default settings, the user account has to have admin rights in the device, since the default file is located in the pc program files. The procedure is to start the software as administrator, open the Settings dialog from the Help tab and press to set the current project as default.

Please review the steps below:

A. With the software closed, take the mouse over the software icon in your Desktop and RIGHT-CLICK on it.

B. From the menu that appears, please select to run the software as administrator.

C. Then, the Default settings dialog can be accessed in the Help tab of the software, perform the changes and select to set current project as Default. This will change the default file that is loaded when the software normally opens.

Use Of The Software

DeepEX software can design any common pile type in minutes. The user can select the preferred pile type and define fast the wall section properties (dimensions, reinforcement, materials). The following pile types are available:

Typical piles (drilled, driven, CFA, Caisons etc) can be of any typical shape (circular, square, hollow) reinforced concrete, structural steel or timber (wood). The pile can be normal or belled type. We can define composite pile sections and we can change the pile section along the pile depth.

Helical piles in DeepFND can be of any typical shape (pipes, square solid and square hollow sections). In each pile we can define and assign and unlimited number of helix configurations. The piles can be grouted. Finally, we can use external casing on the pile head, increasing the pile lateral capacity.

Helical piles (pipes, square solid or square hollow sections)

Reinforced concrete piles (circular or square section)

Prestressed Concrete & Sections with GFRP and CFRP

Steel beams (H piles, pipes, channel sections)

Belled type piles

Timber piles (wood)

Steel core piles

Composite piles

DeepFND and HelixPile software programs can design any common helical pile shape (pipes, square solid and square hollow sections). We can easily select the section shape and define the section parameters (dimensions, material properties etc).

On each created pile section, we can fast generate several helix configurations, by defining the number of helixes, the helix plate diameter and thickness, and the plate spacing. All the generated helix configurations can be saved on a partial database, unique for each generated pile. Later, we can simply access and assign one of the generated helix configurations to the pile.

We can select to use an external casing on any helical pile, in order to increase the lateral pile capacity. We simply need to define the casing section and the length from the pile top, where the casing is placed.

The generated helical pile sections can be saved in a folder in any local device, and they can be loaded in any software file.

Finally, any pile in DeepFND and HelixPile can be grouted. For grouted piles, we need to define the grout diameter, and the part of the pile which is grouted.

In DeepFND and HelixPile software, the user can add construction stages in any foundation pile section model. The stages in our foundation pile design programs work as loading stages, we can access and define tha axial tension and compression loads, as well as, the lateral loads and external moments for different stages and the software will calculate the pile capacities for all load combinations.

Figure: Pile Loading in different stages

In DeepFND and HelixPile software, we can add axial loads, lateral loads and external moments on both directions on each single pile head. In addition, we can add a distrubuted lateral load along the pile (user-defined elevations and magnitude). The following list summarizes the loads that can be applied on each axis.

 - Axial Loads (Z Axis)

In DeepFND and HelixPile we can add axial loads on the pile head. A positive axial load magnitude is a compression load (downwards) and a negative magnitude is a tension load (uplift).

 - Lateral Loads (X Axis)

The X-Axis is along the screen. A positive magnitude is a left-to-right load, and a negative magnitude is a right-to-left load.

 - Lateral Loads (Y Axis)

The Y-Axis is on the perpendicular direction of the screen. A positive magnitude is an inwards load, and a negative magnitude is an outwards load (from the screen to the user).

 - External Moments (X and Y Axis)

The external moments on each direction can be defined for each stage. A positive moment magnitude is a counter-clockwise moment, a negative value is a closkwize moment.

Pile Loads in different stages DeepFND.png

In DeepFND and in HelixPile, we can define several loads on a pile cap, as follows:

A. Single load at the pile cap centroid

This is the default option in the software Wizard. The user can automatically define the maximum axial load on the cap, the maximum lateral loads and external moments on each direction (X and Y axis), as well as the torsional moment that can be applied on the cap.

Loads on the pile cap centroid.png

B. Point Loads on User-Defined Locations

This option allows the user to create load groups of point loads and define the load coordinates, as well as the magnitude of the axial load, and the lateral load and moment at every axis (X and Y). 

Loads on the pile cap - point loads on locations.png

C. Area Loads on the Pile Cap

This option allows the user to assign an area pressure load on the whole cap surface, or at user-defined locations.

Loads on the pile cap - area pressure.png

D. Linear Loads on the Pile Cap

This option allows the user to assign linear loads between 2 user-defined points on the pile cap.

Loads on the pile cap - linear loads.png

The maximum stress check result is the most critical of all structural and geotechnical checks. DeepFND calculates all and reports there the most critical one (biggest).

In general, all checks in the program are (applied force/Capacity). So, Max Stress Check is the most critical of:

1. (Maximum Compression Load) / (Compression Capacity) (Geotechnical check)

2. (Maximum Tension Load) / (Tension Capacity) (Geotechnical check)

3. (Maximum plate reaction) / (Plate Ultimate Capacity) (Structural Check)

4. (Maximum Pile Moment) / (Pile Moment Capacity) (Structural Check)

The user can create the file in excel and then export it as tab delimited. The file can be of .txt or .cor format.

The files should follow a specific format - 1st row should be parameter names, second row should be the units, and then row by row (without the first column numbering), we need to include four  specific columns as presented in the image below:

CPT Log template.JPG

After the cpt log import, the user needs to press on the "Process Data" button, so the rest of the properties are estimated:

CPT Log processing.JPG

The software uses P-Y curves to simulate the soil, while an Euler-Bernoulli beam (elastic or inelastic pile behaviour with distributed plasticity along the pile) is used for the pile. A full FEM analysis engine is currently under development and will be implemented in the DeepFND/HelixPile 2021 versions.

For the lateral resistance contribution of the cap there are 2 mechanisms that need to be included, (a) the passive resistance and (b) the bottom/side friction resistance of the pilecap. We have incorporated an automatic calculation of all the lateral springs of a pile cap. The constitutive laws of the pilecap lateral springs used in the software are illustrated bellow:

Lateral cap response.png

The pile cap is modelled with quadrilateral shell finite elements. The user can post process stress resultants and displacement of the cap.

The user has a number of options available for the consideration of the group interaction factors. The automatic approach corresponds to the methodology proposed in [1], however an extension has been implemented where influence between piles with different dimensions is taken into account.

DeepFND Pile Interaction.JPG

When the raft option is enabled the soil beneath the cap is considered through a non-linear Winkler base (either elastoplastic or exponential plastic formulation based on user selection). Influence of the raft on the soil is taken into account through the automatic configuration of the free length of the internal piles based on the intersection between the pile influence regions. The soil enclosed within the free length region is considered to be moving along with the cap and piles , thus shear resistance contribution along the perimeter of the piles within the free length region is considered to be zero.

The structural capacity is calculated in accordance to the standards selected by the user and the nature of the section (concrete, steel, timber, composite etc). The user can define the structural section (concrete piles with internal reinforcing cage, steel casing, drivel steel beams with or without concrete covers, timber piles and then the software uses the corresponding design codes.

In DeepFND we can view the interaction diagrams for each concrete section.  We can also view Moment and shear along the pile, with the capacity indicated with the red lines left and right of the M and Q diagrams. All diagrams, including the interaction diagrams can be included in the exported reports.

DeepFND Interaction Diagrams.JPG

      Deep Excavation LLC
    240 W 35th Street, Suite 1004
    New York, NY, 10001