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    Simplified Deflection-based Probabilistic Technique for Network-level Pavement Analysis

    Published: 2012

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    The concept of a pavement management system (PMS) was developed following the successful AASHTO Road Test, in the 1950s, when pavement performance was characterized as “the necessary information to compare design alternatives and expectations over the service life of both flexible and rigid pavement structures.” A link was established between performance and the activities of planning, designing, constructing, and maintaining pavements, and the concept of a “PMS” was defined accordingly. Currently, surface distress and roughness measurements are the main components in determining a pavement's existing condition in a PMS. The structural condition, although capable of providing important information on how the pavement will perform in the future (rate of deterioration, types and severity of expected distresses, etc.), is not widely used. Reasons for this lack of presence in a system-wide PMS are mostly related to time-consuming analyses and the need for an experienced analyst. This paper presents the development of simplified, deflection-based analytical techniques that provide rapid, automated screening of pavement's structural capacity for inclusion in a network-level PMS. The approach is based on stochastic-logistic modeling commonly used in reliability engineering. Data from the Long-Term Pavement Performance database was used to develop appropriate models, which relate the expected future performance to deflection-based parameters extracted analytically from falling weight deflectometer deflection basins and site-specific conditions such as climate and traffic. It is of paramount importance to consider the existing structural capacity of pavements together with pavement distresses in order to predict future pavement conditions more accurately and thus successfully fulfill the overall goals of the original concept of “pavement management.”


    pavement deflection, falling weight deflectometer, pavement management system, network-level analysis, pavement performance

    Author Information:

    Carvalho, Regis
    Dynatest Consulting, Upper Marlboro, MD

    Stubstad, Richard
    Dynatest Consulting, Ventura, CA

    Wiser, Larry
    Federal Highway Administration, McLean, VA

    Selezneva, Olga
    Applied Research Associates, Elkridge, MD

    Committee/Subcommittee: E17.42

    DOI: 10.1520/STP104473