Further Analysis of an innovative composite pavement design

Road degradation can be a costly consequence of a poor wearing surface. Semi-rigid road pavement structures have been developed as a solution to high volume and loaded roads, to compromise between a cheap flexible road and a strong rigid road. The project outlines two semi-rigid pavement designs: the slab flat and grid-hole. The grid-hole design was unique in that it had a moulded indentation in the top surface of the concrete, which is intended to factor the shear strength of both the asphalt and emulsion bond strength into the pavements ability to resist deformation.

The scope of this project is to review past research into the feasibility and applicability of semi-rigid pavements in Victoria. Laboratory testing was conducted to ensure appropriate standards were meet and to test the degradation of the pavement designs under an oscillating vertical load. The testing employed the use of the Dynamic Actuator Testing Assembly to apply the oscillating load 172,800 times at a force of 5.5kN per specimen. Computer modelling was developed to gauge a comprehensive knowledge about the stress/strain distribution through the innovative grid-hole design. Analysing the generated data from the laboratory tests will determine the strength and mechanical properties of the design and will therefore govern the feasibility of the design. Additionally, several tests on the compressive strength of asphalt and shear strength of emulsion were conducted to determine the reliability of these materials to mitigate deformation.

Upon completion of the experiment, the collected data has shown clear differences in both design characteristics and allowed the possibility to determine the need for further investigation into the feasibility of the grid-hole design.