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The pile bearing capacity is considered as the most essential factor in designing deep foundations. Direct determination of this parameter in site is costly and difficult. Hence, this study presents a new technique of intelligence system based on the adaptive neuro-fuzzy inference system (ANFIS)-group method of data handling (GMDH) optimized by the imperialism competitive algorithm (ICA), ANFIS-GMDH-ICA for forecasting pile bearing capacity. In this advanced structure, the ICA role is to optimize the membership functions obtained by ANFIS-GMDH technique for receiving a higher accuracy level and lower error. To develop this model, the results of 257 high strain dynamic load tests (performed by authors) were considered and used in the analysis. For comparison purposes, ANFIS and GMDH models were selected and built for pile bearing capacity estimation. In terms of model accuracy, the obtained results showed that the newly developed model (i.e., ANFIS-GMDH-ICA) receives more accurate predicted values of pile bearing capacity compared to those obtained by ANFIS and GMDH predictive models. The proposed ANFIS-GMDH-ICA can be utilized as an advanced, applicable and powerful technique in issues related to foundation engineering and its design.
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