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This product brief is an archived publication and may contain dated technical, contact, and link information
Publication Number:  FHWA-HRT-06-116    Date:  August 2006
Publication Number: FHWA-HRT-06-116
Date: August 2006


Long-Term Pavement Performance Program (LTPP) Materials Reference Library (Mrl)

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FHWA Contact:

Jack Springer, 202–493–3144, jack.springer@fhwa.dot.gov

The purpose of this document is to provide information to individuals interested in obtaining materials from the Federal Highway Administration's Long-Term Pavement Performance (LTPP) Materials Reference Library (MRL).

What is the MRL?

The MRL is a storage facility used to collect loose and core forms of highway materials consisting of asphalt cement, portland cement, natural aggregates, or a combination of materials. The MRL also includes a film storage facility and houses LTPP seasonal and weather equipment. The LTPP program currently maintains the MRL to store materials collected at LTPP General Pavement Study (GPS) and Specific Pavement Study (SPS) sites throughout the United States and Canada. In addition, the facility contains asphalt and aggregate specimens from the Strategic Highway Research Program (SHRP) and material samples from the WesTrack project. All of these materials are available to researchers; however, FHWA must approve requests submitted to the MRL for use of the materials.


The LTPP program established the original MRL facility in Austin, TX, in the late 1980s as part of the original SHRP. The purpose of the MRL was to create a storage or warehouse facility for many of the pavement and subsurface materials that were being sampled during the GPS and SPS experiments of the LTPP study. The MRL also was intended to help address some of the problems associated with the original American Association of State Highway Officials Road Test, where there was a shortage of materials available for subsequent research.

In 1993, the LTPP program moved the MRL facility from Austin to Reno, NV. Over time, and with FHWA's request and approval, the LTPP program began storing materials from FHWA's Crumb Rubber Modifier Project and the WesTrack project at the MRL. In addition, the LTPP program added a climate-controlled room to the MRL facility to house the 35-millimeter films that contain images of the LTPP test sections. Rounds 9 and 10 of these images have been digitized and are available through the LTPP Customer Support Service Center (e-mail: ltppinfo@fhwa.dot.gov). Since 2003, Sierra Transportation Engineers, Inc. (STE) has had a contract to manage the MRL.

Figure 1. Photograph. Photograph of the MRL storage facility. This picture shows an aisle in a large facility that looks like a warehouse. On the left side of the aisle are two shelves with large blue barrels stacked on them. The ride side of the aisle has three shelves stacked blue and black barrels.
Figure 1. Photograph of the MRL storage facility.

MRL Inventory

The MRL makes a wide variety and large quantity of highway materials available to researchers, including the following:

  1. Asphalt inventory.
  2. Aggregate inventory.
  3. SPS inventory.
  4. Cores inventory.
  5. Miscellaneous asphalt materials inventory.
  6. Miscellaneous materials inventory.
  7. Film inventory.
  8. Crumb rubber inventory.
  9. Other materials inventory.

These materials can be obtained by completing the MRL Inventory Request Form. To download this form and view detailed listings of the materials available at the MRL WEB site

General Information
Hours of Operation:
8 a.m. to 5 p.m. PST
Jason Puccinelli, P.E.
Nichols Consulting Engineers, Chtd.
1885 S. Arlington Ave., Suite 111
Reno, NV  89509
Phone   (775) 329-4955
Fax      (775) 329-5098

Shipping Address:
1625 Crane Way
Sparks, NV 89431

Research, Development, and Technology
Turner-Fairbank Highway Research Center
6300 Georgetown Pike
McLean, VA 22101

June 2006