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Publication Number: FHWA-RD-00-056
Date: February/March 2000
Since the introduction of FHWA's LTPPBind software in 1998, pavement engineers have used the program to more easily select the correct performance graded (PG) binder to use for a specific location when implementing the Superpave mix design system. Now college engineering students studying the Superpave binder specification, which classifies binders based on their suitability in a range of climatic conditions, are finding the software to be an equally effective aid.
Fouad Bayomy, a professor at the University of Idaho, introduced LTPPBind to students in two of his classes this year-an undergraduate construction materials course and a graduate pavement materials course. Students "loved it," he reports. "A student can use the program and within an hour, he or she can become comfortable with it. It is a good tool for self learning and checking."
Using the program's climatic data from nearly 8,000 weather stations in the United States and Canada, students can investigate all temperature possibilities for a particular location, make adjustments for different levels of traffic loads and speeds, and determine the appropriate PG grade for an asphalt mix in seconds. "All of these tasks are ordinarily very time consuming and may not be possible for students to do manually," says Bayomy.
Bayomy became familiar with the LTPPBind when he spent a year working with the long-term pavement performance (LTPP) studies team in Washington, DC. He plans to introduce the software to other classes that he teaches, noting that "the program is a great tool whenever a Superpave PG binder is to be selected."
LTPPBind is an enhanced version of the SHRPBIND software that was originally developed by FHWA, based on work done under the Strategic Highway Research Program. An updated version of LTPPBind, Version 2.1, was released last year. The new version included more data, as well as enhancements to the program's data summary reports. The software is available on CD-ROM or can be downloaded from the LTPP Web site (http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/pavement/ltpp/bind/order.cfm). To obtain a copy on CD-ROM, contact the LTPP customer service line at 423-481-2967 (email: firstname.lastname@example.org).
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