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Long-Term Pavement Performance (LTPP) Data Analysis Support: National Pooled Fund Study TPF-5(013): Effects of Multiple Freeze Cycles and Deep Frost Penetration on Pavement Performance and Cost

Primary Topic: Surface and Other Considerations

Description: The objectives of this study are to: (1) quantify the effects of frost penetration on pavement performance in climates with deep sustained frost as compared to environments with multiple freeze-thaw cycles, (2) investigate the effect that local adaptations have on mitigating frost penetration damage, and (3) estimate the associated cost of constructing and maintaining pavements in freezing climates. The approach consisted of modeling various pavement performance measures using both climatic and nonclimatic input variables and performance data collected as part of the Long-Term Pavement Performance program. Five climatic scenarios are defined in terms of climatic input variables for the models. Predicted performance measures are presented for each of the climatic scenarios and compared at a 95 percent confidence interval to determine statistically significant performance differences. Participating pooled fund States (PFS) were queried as to standard specifications, standard designs, average life expectancies, and construction costs specific to each State Highway Agency (SHA). This data along with information acquired through literature review of SHA standard practices is summarized with consideration given to the mitigation of frost-related damage. Life cycle cost analysis for each climatic scenario using predicted performance to determine average life and average agency construction costs for standard pavement sections is also discussed and compared. The use of the performance models for local calibration as required in the National Cooperative Highway Research Program Guide for Mechanistic-Empirical Design of New and Rehabilitated Pavemen Structures is explored along with the possible application of the performance models in pavement management systems.

FHWA Publication Number: FHWA-HRT-06-121

Publication Year: 2006

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