Pile Driving Monitor (PDM)

The Pile Driving Monitor (PDM) accurately and safely measures the temporary compression and final displacement of a driven pile foundation during pile driving.  The PDM can be used in conjunction with the Pile Driving Analyzer®.

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The Pile Driving Monitor (PDM) uses optically safe infrared lasers to track a disposable reflective sticker adhered directly to the pile. Because the maximum pile movement occurs before the ground vibrations reach the PDM, and the final set measurement is taken after the vibrations have passed, the set and temporary compression measurements are accurate to ±0.1mm or better at a distance of 10m from the pile.

In many countries, the current practice for accepting piles requires the measurement of set and sometimes Temporary Compression (TC) on the pile during installation. Working in close proximity to piling hammers presents significant safety risks to personnel, such as high noise and falling debris from hammers, leaders or spalling concrete from the pile head.

The PDM eliminates the need for workers to stand under working piling hammers while measuring set, a significant improvement to the health and safety of workers on driven piling projects. The combined speed, accuracy, and improved safety allow for all foundation elements to be tested during the installation process.

The use of a PDM in combination with a Pile Driving Analyzer® (PDA) on driven piling projects represents a second wave of monitoring which provides an integrated approach to providing an unprecedented level of quality assurance to every pile. It also provides a pathway to verification and sign-off of the whole foundation system.

The PDM has the following features and applications:

  • Recording of pile set and temporary compression while protecting the health and safety of site personnel
  • Hammer monitoring
  • Monitoring of marine piles from a fixed platform

The PDM has been designed from the ground up to be construction-friendly—robust, user-friendly and efficient. The PDM can be mounted on a tripod or placed on the ground 5m to 15m from the pile. For an experienced operator, the time for a PDM test is comparable to taking a traditional set card measurement.


The Pile Driving Monitor (PDM) software comes preloaded onto a Microsoft Surface Pro 3 tablet PC, provided with every PDM. Communication between the Tablet and PDM is wireless to maximize flexibility and minimize trip hazards on site, and provide the opportunity for the tablet to be cabin-mounted. An option for connection via USB cable is also provided.

  • Weights (including battery): 4kg
  • Dimensions (width, height, depth): 172 x 200 x 342 mm
  • Operating Temperature: -10˚ to +40˚C
  • IP Classification: IP65
  • Optics
    • Transmitters: 4 pcs IR-LED
    • Measuring FOV (Field of View): 50 mrad (vertical, 50 cm / 10 m)
    • Pointers: 2 pcs Class 2 visible laser, 635m
  • Reflector
    • 3M Diamond Grade tape, optimally 6 to 50 m from PDM
  • Extended Range (<6m – >10m):  Tape reduced or increased in width accordingly
  • Sampling Rate: 100 – 400 Hz
  • Accelerometer, Tilt & Rotate
    • Static measurement range: ± 50˚
  • Supply Power
    • Battery (removable): Ultralife UBBL25, Li-ion 10.8V, 4.8Ah
    • Charger: Mascot 2240LI/3CELL
  • Data Interfaces
    • WLAN: Lantronix xPico Wi-Fi
    • USB: LTW, B-type female connector (IP68)
    • USB cable included: 5m
  • Current Consumption (12 V, typ.)
    • PDM run time: up to 24 hours
    • Offset Distance Range: 5m to 15 m maximum from pile
    • Recommended range: 6m to 10 m from pile
  • Recommended Maximum Rotational Deviations
    • From horizontal plane: 1V : 10H
    • From vertical plane: 1H : 10V
  • Recommended Accuracy in Offset: 10mm or better
  • Notional Displacement Accuracy: ± 0.1 mm within recommended range
  • Notional Velocity Accuracy: ± 0.1m/s within recommended rage and at 1kHz conditioning frequency
  • Recommended Mounting: Solid placement on sand bag on ground or on survey tripod
  • Sampling Rate for Pile Monitoring: 4000H ± 0.2%
  • Hardware
    • Secure connection: Standard WPA2, password protected
    • Anti-amendment report: Key values of the site report (input identification and output results) are encrypted into a QR code. Through current validation, utility authorities can tell whether or not a report is modified.
    • Class 2 Laser-Device: Classification IEC 60825-1:2007
    • Class 2: “visible-light lasers (400 – 700nm) limited to maximum 1 MW continuous wave”

Warning: using the device in any other way than is described can expose the user to dangerous invisible

PDI offers expert training in the use of the PDM.