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High Performance Concrete Pavements
Project Summary

CHAPTER 30. SOUTH DAKOTA 1 (US Route 83, Pierre)

Introduction

In the early 1990s, the South Dakota Department of Transportation (SDDOT) investigated the use of non-metallic fiber reinforced concrete (NMFRC) on several small bridge and highway applications (Ramakrishnan 1995; Ramakrishnan 1997). Although the NMFRC performed well in each application, a strong need for additional information on the design, construction, and performance of NMFRC pavements was identified. Thus, this project, located on US 83 northeast of Pierre (see Figure 85), was constructed in 1996 under the TE-30 program to allow, on a larger scale, the evaluation of NMFRC pavements with different slab thicknesses, joint spacings, and the need for transverse joint load transfer (Ramakrishnan and Tolmare 1998).

Figure 85. Location of SD 1 project.

An outline map of South Dakota shows the SD 1 project located on US 83 in Pierre in the center of the State, near the crossing of I-90 and US 83. I-29 is also shown near the eastern border.

Study Objectives

In order to more fully assess the suitability of NMFRC in full-depth concrete, this project was constructed to accomplish the following objectives (Ramakrishnan and Tolmare 1998):

  • Develop NMFRC full-depth pavement designs that will enhance PCC pavement performance, including appropriate slab thicknesses, joint load transfer designs, and joint spacings.
  • Evaluate the constructibility and performance of NMFRC full-depth pavement.
  • Evaluate the economic impacts of using NMFRC full-depth pavement.

Project Design and Layout

This project was constructed in 1996 on US 83 northeast of Pierre, between mileage reference markers (MRMs) 144 and 145 (Ramakrishnan and Tolmare 1998). The new pavement is a two-lane roadway (each lane 4.3 m [14 ft] wide), and was constructed on an existing gravel base course. Eight different test sections are included in the project: one control section and seven non-metallic fiber reinforced concrete pavement (NMFRCP) sections. Figure 86 illustrates the layout of the test sections, and Table 46 summarizes the design features of the test sections. Table 47 presents the experimental design matrix for the project.

Figure 86. Layout of SD 1 test sections (Ramakrishnan and Tolmare 1998).

Layout of SD 1 test sections (Ramakrishnan and Tolmare 1998). Eight test sections spanning two 14-ft lanes, northbound and southbound, are shown with their dimensions and specifications. Section A (control section) is 1,000 ft long, 8 in. of jointed plain concrete pavement with doweled joints and 20-ft joint spacing. Section B is 250 ft long, 6.5-in. of non-metallic fiber reinforced concrete pavement (NMFRCP) with no dowels and 25-ft joint spacing. Section C is 245 ft long, 6.5 in. of NMFRCP with no dowels and 35-ft joint spacing. Section D is 500 ft long, 8 in. of NMFRCP with doweled joints and 25-ft joint spacing. Section E is 490 ft long, 8-in. of NMFRCP with doweled joints and 35-ft joint spacing. Section F is 500 ft long, 8-in. of NMFRCP with no dowels and 25-ft joint spacing. Section G is 490 ft long, 8 in. of NMFRCP with no dowels and 35-ft joint spacing. Section H is 1,290 ft long, 8 in. of NMFRCP with no dowels and no joints.

Table 46. Design Features of SD 1 Test Sections (Ramakrishnan and Tolmare 1998)
TEST
SECTION
LENGTH,
FT
TYPETHICKNESS, IN.DOWELEDJOINT
SPACING, FT
VOLUME OF
FIBER CONCRETE, YD3
A1000JPCP8Yes200
B250FRCP (25 lb/yd3)6.5No25173
C245FRCP (25 lb/yd3)6.5No35170
D500FRCP (25 lb/yd3)8Yes25346
E490FRCP (25 lb/yd3)8Yes35339
F500FRCP (25 lb/yd3)8No25346
G490FRCP (25 lb/yd3)8No35339
H1290FRCP (25 lb/yd3)8NoNone892
JPCP = jointed plain concrete pavement; FRCP = fiber-reinforced concrete pavement
Table 47. Experimental Design Matrix for SD 1
 JPCPNMFRCP
DoweledNondoweledDoweledNondoweled
6.5-in. Slab20 ft Joints    
25 ft Joints   Section B
35 ft Joints   Section C
No Joints    
8-in. Slab20 ft JointsSection A   
25 ft Joints  Section DSection F
35 ft Joints  Section ESection G
No Joints   Section H
JPCP = jointed plain concrete pavement; NMFRCP = non-metallic fiber-reinforced concrete pavement

The NMFRCP sections used polyolefin fibers, manufactured by the 3M company. These fibers are purported to provide mechanical improvements to the concrete and are also non-corrodible and resistant to chemicals (Ramakrishnan and Tolmare 1998). The NMFRCP mix design used in this project is shown in Table 48 (Ramakrishnan and Tolmare 1998).

Table 48. NMFRCP Mix Design Used in SD 1 Project
(Ramakrishnan and Tolmare 1998)
MIX COMPONENTQUANTITY
Cement (Type II)510 lb/yd3
Fly ash (Type F)112 lb/yd3
Water264 lb/yd3
Limestone coarse aggregate1417 lb/yd3
Fine aggregate1417 lb/yd3
Polyolefin fibers25 lb/yd3
Slump1-2 in.
Air content6 ± 1.5 percent

Preliminary Results/Findings

The monitoring of the design, construction, and early performance of these pavement sections had led to the following conclusions regarding the use of NMFRC pavements (Ramakrishnan and Tolmare 1998):

  • The same construction techniques and construction equipment can be used in the batching and placement of fiber-reinforced concrete pavements. The only modification needed in the batching process is the addition of a plastic tube to facilitate the introduction of the fibers. However, some additional mixing time may be required for NMFRC pavements.
  • No differences in the riding quality of the pavement sections could be established. All of the pavement sections met the smoothness criteria for new pavement construction.
  • During the construction of these test sections, both cylinders and beams were cast for later laboratory testing. A comparison of the flexural strengths for beams cast from concrete used on different days of paving is shown in Figure 87; these are the average of three beam breaks for each of the following specimens:
    • "P1" indicates specimens collected from the northbound NMFRC paving operations on August 15, 1996.
    • "P2" indicates specimens collected from a portion of the southbound NMFRC paving operations on August 26, 1996.
    • "P3" indicates specimens collected from the rest of the southbound NMFRC paving operations on August 27, 1996.
    • "Control" indicates specimens collected from the northbound control section paved on August 15, 1996.

    The strengths of the NMFRC specimens are observed to be greater than that of the control section, although on average the percent increase is only about 20 percent. However, other laboratory tests of toughness, impact, fatigue, endurance limit, and post-crack load carrying capacity suggested that the structural properties of the fiber-modified concrete had been improved.

    • After about 3 years of service, condition surveys of the pavement sections revealed that transverse cracks had occurred only in the section without joints (section H). These cracks occurred at approximately 26-m (85-ft) intervals. No other distresses were noted within the pavement sections.
  • Data from FWD testing showed that the load transfer was less in the NMFRC pavement sections compared to the control section (see Figure 88). In general, the load transfer was less in sections with longer joint spacings, thinner slabs, or nondoweled joints. The longer joint spacings of the nondoweled NMFRC pavements reduce the effectiveness of the aggregate interlock at the joints, even though they contain fibers. This suggests that the doweling recommendations for conventional PCC pavements also apply to fiber-reinforced concrete pavements. Unfortunately, direct comparisons of load transfer could not be made between the control section and the NMFRC sections because joint spacing was not held constant in the experimental design.
  • The initial cost of the 203-mm (8-in.) JPCP was $18.36/m2 ($15.35/yd2), whereas the initial cost of the 203-mm (8-in.) NMFRC was $34.57/m2 ($28.90/yd2) (both based on an 8.5-m [28-ft] wide pavement). A life cycle cost analysis of both designs showed that the conventional design was 61 and 31 percent cheaper than the NMFRC design for analysis periods of 40 and 60 years, respectively. Nevertheless, there may be special design situations in which longer joint spacings, thinner slabs, or more efficient performance may dictate the use of NMFRC pavements.

Figure 87. Summary of flexural strength tests for SD 1
(Ramakrishnan and Tolmare 1998).

Summary of flexural strength tests for SD 1 (Ramakrishnan and Tolmare 1998). The flexural strength is measured in psi from 0 to 800 at 7 days and 28 days. The four specimens measured are marked P1, P2, P3, and Control. P1 was 520 psi in the 7-day test and 620 psi in the 28-day test. P2 was 490 psi at 7 days and 580 psi at 28 days. P3 was 575 psi at 7 days and 740 psi at 28 days. Control was 525 psi at 28 days; no measurement was taken at 7 days.

Figure 88. Load transfer efficiencies for SD 1 sections.

Load transfer efficiencies for SD 1 sections. The load transfer efficiencies (percentages) for eight SD 1 project sections are shown: Section A, 95 percent; B, 80 percent; C, 72 percent; D, 92 percent; E, 91 percent; F, 82 percent; G, 80 percent; and H, 65 percent.

Interim Results/Findings

Distress surveys conducted on these test sections in February 2004 revealed no apparent distress of any kind except for the uncontrolled transverse cracks in section H (Johnston and Huft 2004). The uncontrolled transverse cracks showed no faulting, spalling, etc. and remained narrow. The entire pavement section was uniform in appearance and in good condition (Johnston & Huft 2004).

Points of Contact

Dave Huft
South Dakota Department of Transportation
700 East Broadway Avenue
Pierre, SD 57501-2586
(605) 773-3292
Dave.Huft@state.sd.us

Venkataswamy Ramakrishnan
Department of Civil andEnvironmental Engineering
SD School of Mines and Technology
501 E St. Joseph Street
Rapid City, SD 57701-3995
(605) 394-2403

References

Johnston, D., and D. Huft. 2004. Distress Survey Results of the Non-Metallic Fiber Reinforced Concrete Pavement Test Sections on U.S. 83. E-mail communication from South Dakota Department of Transportation, Pierre.

Ramakrishnan, V. 1995. Evaluation of Non-Metallic Fiber Reinforced Concrete in PCC Pavements and Structures. Report No. SD94-04-I. South Dakota Department of Transportation, Pierre.

---. 1997. Demonstration of Polyolefin Fiber Reinforced Concrete in Bridge Replacement. Report No. 5095-22. South Dakota Department of Transportation, Pierre.

Ramakrishnan, V., and N. S. Tolmare. 1998. Evaluation of Non-Metallic Fiber Reinforced Concrete in New Full Depth PCC Pavements. Report No. SD96-15-F. South Dakota Department of Transportation, Pierre.

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Updated: 04/07/2011
 

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