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Publication Number:  FHWA-HRT-18-049    Date:  October 2018
Publication Number: FHWA-HRT-18-049
Date: October 2018

 

Analysis Procedures for Evaluating Superheavy Load Movement on Flexible Pavements, Volume I: Final Report

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FOREWORD

The movement of superheavy loads (SHLs) on the Nation’s highways is an increasingly common, vital economic necessity for many important industries, such as chemical, oil, electrical, and defense. Many superheavy components are extremely large and heavy (gross vehicle weights in excess of a few million pounds), and they often require specialized trailers and hauling units. At times, SHL vehicles have been assembled to suit the load being transported, and therefore, the axle configurations have not been standard or consistent. Accommodating SHL movements without undue damage to highway infrastructure requires the determination of whether the pavement is structurally adequate to sustain the SHL movement and protect any underground utilities. Such determination involves analyzing the likelihood of instantaneous or rapid load-induced shear failure of the pavement structure.

The goal of this project was to develop a comprehensive analysis process for evaluating SHL movement on flexible pavements. As part of this project, a comprehensive mechanistic-based analysis approach consisting of several analysis procedures was developed for flexible pavement structures and documented in a 10-volume series of Federal Highway Administration reports—a final report and 9 appendices.(19) This is Analysis Procedures for Evaluating Superheavy Load Movement on Flexible Pavements, Volume I: Final Report, which presents a summary of the analysis procedures developed to address the critical factors associated with SHL movement on flexible pavements. This report is intended for use by highway agency pavement engineers responsible for assessing the structural adequacy of pavements in the proposed route and identifying mitigation strategies, where warranted, in support of the agency’s response to SHL-movement permit requests.

Cheryl Allen Richter, Ph.D., P.E.
Director, Office of Infrastructure
Research and Development

Notice

This document is disseminated under the sponsorship of the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) in the interest of information exchange. The U.S. Government assumes no liability for the use of the information contained in this document.

The U.S. Government does not endorse products or manufacturers. Trademarks or manufacturers’ names appear in this report only because they are considered essential to the objective of the document.

Quality Assurance Statement

The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) provides high-quality information to serve Government, industry, and the public in a manner that promotes public understanding. Standards and policies are used to ensure and maximize the quality, objectivity, utility, and integrity of its information. FHWA periodically reviews quality issues and adjusts its programs and processes to ensure continuous quality improvement

 

Technical Report Documentation Page

1. Report No.

FHWA-HRT-18-049

2. Government Accession No.

 

3 Recipient's Catalog No.

 

4. Title and Subtitle

Analysis Procedures for Evaluating Superheavy Load Movement on Flexible Pavements, Volume I: Final Report

5. Report Date

October 2018

6. Performing Organization Code

 

7. Author(s)

Elie Y. Hajj (ORCID: 0000-0001-8568-6360), Raj V. Siddharthan (ORCID: 0000-0002-3847-7934), Hadi Nabizadeh (ORCID: 0000-0001-8215-1299), Sherif Elfass (ORCID: 0000-0003-3401-6513), Mohamed Nimeri (ORCID: 0000-0002-3328-4367), Seyed Farzan Kazemi (ORCID: 0000-0003-2313-4995), Dario Batioja-Alvarez (0000-0002-1094-553X), and Murugaiyah Piratheepan (ORCID: 0000-0002-3302-4856)

8. Performing Organization Report No.

WRSC-UNR-201710-01

9. Performing Organization Name and Address

Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering
University of Nevada
1664 North Virginia Street
Reno, NV 89557

10. Work Unit No. (TRAIS)

 

11. Contract or Grant No.

DTFH61-13-C-00014

12. Sponsoring Agency Name and Address

Office of Research, Development, and Technology
Federal Highway Administration
6300 Georgetown Pike
McLean, VA 22101

13. Type of Report and Period Covered

Final Report; August 2013–July 2018

14. Sponsoring Agency Code

HRDI-20

15. Supplementary Notes

Nadarajah Sivaneswaran (HRDI-20; ORCID: 0000-0002-3525-9165), Office of Infrastructure Research and Development, Turner-Fairbank Highway Research Center, served as the Contracting Officer’s Representative.

16. Abstract

The movement of superheavy loads (SHLs) has become more common over the years, since it is a vital necessity for many important industries, such as chemical, oil, electrical, and defense. SHL hauling units are much larger in size and weight compared to the standard trucks. SHL gross vehicle weights may be in excess of a few million pounds, so they often require specialized trailers and components with nonstandard spacing between tires and axles. Accommodating SHL movements requires the determination of whether the pavement is structurally adequate and involves the analysis of the likelihood of instantaneous or rapid load-induced shear failure. In this study, a comprehensive mechanistic-based methodology consisting of the following procedures was developed: segmentation of an SHL vehicle for analysis, subgrade bearing failure analysis, sloped-shoulder failure analysis, buried utility risk analysis, localized shear failure analysis, deflection-based service limit analysis, and cost allocation analysis. In addition, a comprehensive experimental program that included five full-scale pavement/soil testing experiments performed at a large-scale box facility was designed and carried out for the verification and calibration of a number of theoretically based procedures incorporated in the analysis approach. Supplementary numerical modeling as well as measured data from Accelerated Pavement Testing facilities provided additional verification of the procedures adopted in this study. The analysis procedures developed were then implemented into a user-friendly software package, SuperPACK (Superheavy Load Pavement Analysis PACKage), to evaluate SHL movements on flexible pavements. This report presents a summary of the analysis procedures developed for evaluating SHL movement on flexible pavements. Further details of these procedures are presented in a series of stand-alone appendices (volumes Ⅱ through Ⅹ).(19)

17. Key Words

Superheavy load, flexible pavement, nondestructive testing, ultimate failure, buried utility, service limit, cost allocation

18. Distribution Statement

No restrictions. This document is available through the National Technical Information Service, Springfield, VA 22161.
http://www.ntis.gov

19. Security Classification
(of this report)

Unclassified

20. Security Classification
(of this page)

Unclassified

21. No. of Pages

117

22. Price

N/A

Form DOT F 1700.7 (8-72) Reproduction of completed page authorized

 

 

 

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Turner-Fairbank Highway Research Center | 6300 Georgetown Pike | McLean, VA | 22101