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PAVEMENT

(CONSTRUCTION EQUIPMENT & LOW COST ROADS)

Definition,
Types
Flexible & Rigid Pavement (General)
Important Terms

Md. Mehedi Hasnat


Lecturer
Department of CE
AUST

PAVEMENT
Definition: The pavement is a structure which separates the tires of
vehicles from the underlying foundation material. Foundation
material is generally the soil or structural concrete or steel bridge
deck. Pavements over soil are multilayer construction with
relatively weak material below and progressively stronger one
above.
Pavement should be STRONG enough to resist the stresses induced
upon them and THICK enough to distribute the external loads on
earthen subgrade, so that the subgrade can safely bear the stress.

Functions/Desirable Properties of Pavement:


The pavement should have the following characteristics:
1. It should be structurally sound enough to withstand the stresses
imposed on them.
2. It should be sufficiently thick to distribute the loads evenly on the
subgrade.
3. It should provide hard wearing surface so that abrading actions of
wheels do not damage the surface.
4. It should be dust proof so that traffic safety is not impaired.
5. Should be smooth enough to provide good riding quality.
6. The surface should be textured and have enough roughness to
prevent skidding of vehicles.
7. The surface should not produce excessive level of sound from
moving wheels.
8. The surface should be impervious to water.
9. Should have long life and low maintenance cost.

TYPES OF PAVEMENT
There are four types of pavement. They are:
1.
2.
3.
4.

Flexible pavement
Rigid Pavement
Semi-rigid Pavement
Composite Pavement

1. Flexible pavement:
. This is a layered system which has low flexural strength.
. External loads are largely transmitted to the subgrade by lateral
distribution with increasing depth.
. Pavement deflects momentarily on the application of loads, but
rebounds to its original level upon removal of load.
. Strong subgrade is very important for the durability of flexible
pavement.
. Performance of flexible pavement is governed by the deformation
suffered by the subgrade.

TYPES OF PAVEMENT
2. Rigid Pavement:
It withstands the load from flexural strength or beam strength.
Permits the slab to bridge over minor irregularities of the
subgrade.
Performance of rigid pavement depends largely on the strength of
the slab.
3. Semi-rigid Pavement:
Has much lower flexural strength compared to rigid pavement.
Also derives support by lateral distribution of loads as in flexible
pavement.
Example: Lean-concrete base, soil-cement and lime-puzzalona
concrete construction.
4. Composite Pavement:
Consists of multiple structurally significant layers, sometimes of
heterogeneous composition.
Example: Brick sandwich concrete pavement.
(Our concern will be flexible and rigid pavement)

LAYERS OF PAVEMENT

Flexible Pavement

Rigid Pavement

Surfacing (wearing course,


+ base course)

Concrete Slab (upper slab +


lower slab)

Base

Sub-base (upper sub-base +


lower sub-base)

Sub-base

Subgrade

Subgrade

FUNCTIONS OF DIFFERENT PAVEMENT LAYERS


Sub-graade:
1. The load is transferred by the sub-grade effectively to the earth mass.
2. Provide strong formation to build the other layers.
Function of Sub-base Layer
1. Providing additional help to base and surface courses in distributing the
load.
2. To prevent the intrusion of fine grained road bed soil into the base course.
3. Minimizing the damaging effect of frost action.
4. Facilitate drainage of free water that might get accumulated below the
pavement.

Function of base course


1. Act as a structural portion of pavement and thus distribute the load.
2. When constructed directly over the subgrade, to prevent intrusion of
subgrade soil into the pavement.

Function of Surface Courses


1. Perform as a structural part of pavement.
2. Resist the abrasive force of traffic.
3. Reduce the amount of surface water penetration.
4. Provide a skid resistant pavement.
5. Provide a smooth and uniform riding surface

FLEXIBLE & RIGID PAVEMENT (GENERAL)


Flexible Pavement:
1. Permanent deformation occurs as the traffic load is applied. In welldesigned pavement this deformation is evenly distributed among the
different layers of pavement
2. Vertical compressive stress is induced in all the layers. Wearing course,
binding course and any bituminous base material will also be subjected
to tensile stress.
3. Viscosity of the bituminous material increases with time. This increases
the stiffness of bituminous material and reduces the stresses developed.
4. Structural failure will generally be initiated by fatigue cracking of the
surface course.
Rigid Pavement:
1. Not susceptible to surface deformation under traffic load.
2. Load is distributed by beam action of slab.
3. Structural deterioration is indicated by cracking.
4. Wheel load gives rise to tensile stress in the underside of the slab which
in under-designed pavement gives rise to fatigue cracking.

COMPARISON BETWEEN FLEXIBLE & RIGID PAVEMENT


1. Design Precision: Rigid pavement can be designed more precisely than
flexible pavement. Because analysis of stresses in rigid pavement is based
on beam action/flexural strength which is better understood. But analysis of
flexible pavement is complicated and design is mostly based on empirical
relations.
2. Life-cycle: Rigid pavement has higher life than flexible pavement. Welldesigned rigid pavement with proper maintenance can last upto 40 to 50
years. Highest life expectancy of a flexible pavement is 10 to 20 years.
3.

Maintenance: The only maintenance needed for cement-concrete


pavement is the maintenance of joints. Continuously Reinforced Concrete
Pavement has no joints, therefore needs no maintenance. On the other
hand flexible pavements need maintenance for:
Sealing cracks
Treating potholes
resurfacing
Resealing

4. Initial Cost: Initial cost is higher for rigid pavement


than flexible pavement.

COMPARISON BETWEEN FLEXIBLE & RIGID PAVEMENT


(CONT.)

5. Stage Construction: Stage construction can be done for flexible


pavement. It is not applicable for rigid pavement.
6. Availability of Materials: Depends on the country.
7.

Surface Characteristics: Concrete pavement has good surface


characteristics as it is free from rutting, potholes and corrugation. In flexible
pavement only asphaltic concrete gives good riding quality. During
construction rigid pavement needs special consideration for ensuring skid
resistance.

8. Penetration of Water: Water may penetrate through the lower layers in


rigid pavement through the joints. Mud-pumping or pumping can occur in
rigid pavement if water get to the base layer. If properly maintained this can
be avoided. In flexible pavement some water will always penetrate to the
lower layers as it is not impervious. Cracks and pors are obvious in flexible
pavement. Potholes are created in flexible pavement.
9. Traffic dislocation during construction: Rigid pavement cannot be made
open for traffic before at least 28 days after construction. Bituminous
pavement can be opened for traffic shortly the final rolling is done.
10.Environmental Consideration: Bituminous pavement construction is
hazardous to environment than rigid pavements.

**Discuss the suitability of flexible and rigid pavement for road construction in

FACTORS AFFECTING THE PERFORMANCE OF PAVEMENT


Traffic loading magnitude, configuration and the number of load repetitions
by heavy vehicles.
Moisture: Moisture can enter the pavement structure through cracks and
holes in the surface, laterally through the subgrade, and from the underlying
water table through capillary action. Consequences are: lubrication of
particles, loss of particle interlock and subsequent particle displacement
resulting in pavement failure.
Subgrade: For too weak Subgrade, the pavement will flex excessively which
ultimately causes the pavement to fail. If natural variations in the
composition of the subgrade are not adequately addressed by the pavement
design, significant differences in pavement performance will be experienced.
Construction Quality: Improper compaction, improper moisture conditions
during construction, quality of materials, and accurate layer thickness (after
compaction) all directly affect the performance of a pavement.
Maintenance: No matter how well the pavement is built, it will deteriorate
over time based upon the mentioned factors. The timing of maintenance is
very important,.

FACTORS AFFECTING THE PAVEMENT DESIGN


1. Design Life: Design life or performance period is the time for which
the initially designed pavement structure will last before any
rehabilitation is needed. Where the level of serviceability is the
criteria for design of pavement the design life, the design life is the
time elapsed for a newly constructed pavement to deteriorate from
its initial level of serviceability to terminal level of serviceability.
2. Reliability (R): It is the probability that any particular type of
distress will (or combination of distress manifestation) will remain
below or within the permissible level during the design life.
3. Traffic Factors:
Wheel Load
Impact
Repetition of Wheel Load
Position of Wheel Load across Pavement

FACTORS AFFECTING THE PAVEMENT DESIGN


4. Climatic Factors:
Rainfall
Frost
Temperature
5. Road Geometry:
Horizontal Curves
Vertical Profile
6. Subgrade Strength and Drainage
Subgrade type and compacted density
Surface and Subsurface Drainage property
7. Material Properties for Structural Design:
CBR (California Bearing Ratio) value for flexible pavement
Modulus of Subgrade Reaction(k) for Rigid pavement

IMPORTANT TERMS AND DEFINITIONS


Traffic Load (ESAL)
Equivalent Standard Axle Load; that is 18 kip/80 KN.
Various traffic loads are converted to ESAL.
This is to have a common ground on the Design method.
Concept of LEF (Load Equivalency Factor):
Different for Different Axle (Table 16-2 & 16-3, Wright & Dixon)

Single

Tandem

Tridem

Generalized forth power law:

IMPORTANT TERMS AND DEFINITIONS (CONT.)


Traffic Analysis:
n
(1

r
)
1
Predicting Future Demand T [
]T1
r

T = Expected Traffic During Design Period


r = traffic growth rate.
N = Design Period
T1 = Traffic volume during 1st year.
**Example 16-1. 16-2, (Wright & Dixon)

IMPORTANT TERMS AND DEFINITIONS (CONT.)


Reliability (R)
Incorporates a degree of certainty into design process.
Ensures various design alternatives will last the analysis period.
[For example, a designer may specify that there should only be a 5 %
chance that the design does not last a specified number of years (e.g.,
20 years). This is the same as stating that there should be a 95 %
chance that the design does last the specified number of years (e.g., 20
years). Then, the reliability is 95 % (100 % 5 %)]
For a given reliability level, R is function of Standard Deviation S 0.
S0 = 0.45 for Flexible pavement & 0.35 for Rigid pavement
9(AASHTO).

IMPORTANT TERMS AND DEFINITIONS (CONT.)


Serviceability Concept:
Is estimated by Present Serviceability Index (PSI).
Based on data on the roads longitudinal roughness, patch work, rutting and
cracking.

PSI 5.41 1.80 log 1 SV

0.9

CP

(dont hurt yourself)


SV = mean of the slope variance in the two
wheel paths (measured with the CHLOE profilometer or BPR Roughometer)
C = total linear feet of Class 3 and Class 4 cracks
per 1000 ft2 of pavement area.
P = Patching; expressed in terms of ft2 per 1000
ft2 of pavement surfacing.
Article 16-11 for detail, Wright & Dixon

IMPORTANT TERMS AND DEFINITIONS (CONT.)


Modulus of Subgrade Reaction (k):
Determined from loading test on a circular plate of 30 dia.
k = Load, P/ deformation,
Field test, expensive & time consuming.
Estimation based on CBR etc. tests (Figure 7.36, Huang, 2004)

Elastic Modulus (E or K1, K2 etc.):


Measure of soil stiffness.
Defined as the ratio of the stress along an axis over the
strain along that axis in the range of elastic soil behavior.
often used for estimation of soil settlement and elastic
deformation analysis.
Used for design of base, sub-base layers.

References:
Right, P. H. and Dixon, K. Highway Engineering. 7th Edition.
2003
Huang, Y. Pavement Analysis and Design. 2nd Edition. 1993.