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Frontiers of Structural and Civil Engineering >> 2022, Volume 16, Issue 3 doi: 10.1007/s11709-022-0811-7

Bridging the gap between laboratory and field moduli of asphalt layer for pavement design and assessment: A comprehensive loading frequency-based approach

Available online: 2022-04-22

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Asphalt pavement is a key component of highway infrastructures in China and worldwide. In asphalt pavement design and condition assessment, the modulus of the asphalt mixture layer is a crucial parameter. However, this parameter varies between the laboratory and field loading modes (i.e., loading frequency, compressive or tensile loading pattern), due to the viscoelastic property and composite structure of the asphalt mixture. The present study proposes a comprehensive frequency-based approach to correlate the asphalt layer moduli obtained under two field and three laboratory loading modes. The field modes are vehicular and falling weight deflectometer (FWD) loading modes, and the laboratory ones are uniaxial compressive (UC), indirect tensile (IDT), and four-point bending (4PB) loading modes. The loading frequency is used as an intermediary parameter for correlating the asphalt layer moduli under different loading modes. The observations made at two field large-scale experimental pavements facilitate the correlation analysis. It is found that the moduli obtained via laboratory 4PB tests are pretty close to those of vehicular loading schemes, in contrast to those derived in UC, IDT, and FWD modes, which need to be adjusted. The corresponding adjustment factors are experimentally assessed. The applications of those adjustment factors are expected to ensure that the moduli measured under different loading modes are appropriately used in asphalt mixture pavement design and assessment.

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