Measured temperature distribution of fresh asphalt
Within the Tire Road Consortium, the research chair Construction Management and Engineering focuses on:
- improving the quality of asphalt pavement by means of improving the homogeneity and compaction methods;
- improvement of durability of pavement by research and simulation of the compaction process;
- research on risks and risk management for building and usage of roads.
An important process within road construction is to process and compact the asphalt. To improve the process and organization of road building and, subsequently the quality of the asphalt pavement, the control over the road construction process should be improved. Temperature is an important factor here. Variations in temperature lead to variations in material density after compaction resulting in variations in life span of the pavement.
Within the chair Construction Management and Engineering, research is carried out on mapping out the temperature variations in asphalt during processing and actual depositing the asphalt. In situ methods are being developed to homogenize the asphalt temperature and to monitor the temperature.
Shear stress distribution during rolling
Currently, not much fundamental knowledge of the asphalt material behavior during processing is available in literature. To get a better grip on the behavior, finite element simulation models are developed. These models make it possible to look in detail into the material, e.g. the occurring shear stresses in the asphalt layer during rolling. The usability of such a method strongly depends on the accuracy of the model, in which a correct asphalt material model is of paramount importance.
Road construction companies and road maintenance authorities have to deal with risks due to factors which are hard to control. A few of these factors are the weather during road construction, variations in the composition of the road bed and complex collaborations with other contractors and subcontractors. A methodology is developed to analyze the technical risks of the asphalt paving process. In this methodology, theory and practical experience in the areas of asphalt production, lay down process and use are combined. Hence, an instrument is developed to assist in predicting which risks occur and how significant those are. In this way the model provides insight in the robustness of road pavement during its lifecycle with respect to the most important fracture mechanisms.