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Project Type
Education and Technology Transfer
Project Dates
09/01/2016 - 08/31/2017
Principal Investigators
Project Status

State agencies are hesitant to implement results purely based on laboratory or computational studies because they are not sure how a particular material or technology will perform on roadways. One solution to this issue is to construct full-scale pilot pavement sections and monitor their performance under real traffic. However, conducting such pilot programs is inherently expensive, risky, and requires a significant amount of time to complete. In fact, it could take several years for state agencies to evaluate a new paving material or technology; thus, risking the use of unproven materials on roadways. This in turn might result in increasing maintenance costs or even require reconstructing these pilot sections.

The recent advancements in pavement testing (i.e., development of portable and nonportable full-scale pavement testing machines) offer state agencies the ability to simulate longterm traffic conditions in a relatively short period of time; ranging between two to six months. Therefore, it can be argued that accelerated pavement testing serves as a “sweet spot” between laboratory and field testing. State agencies also do not need to risk using public roadways as pilot studies since full-scale sections can be constructed at facilities that have accelerated pavement testing capabilities. Despite these advantages; however, it should be noted that accelerated pavement testing is limited to evaluating the impacts of traffic loading and cannot capture effects due to environmental conditions.

Rowan University has recently established the Center for Research and Education in Advanced Transportation Engineering Systems (CREATEs). CREATEs is the only center in the Northeast region of the United States to house an Accelerated Pavement Testing Facility (RUAPTF) and an AMRL-certified Construction and Materials laboratory (RUCOM). RUAPTF offers space to construct up to twenty full-scale pavement sections and can conduct accelerated testing using a Dynatest Mark IV Heavy Vehicle Simulator (HVS). Rowan’s HVS was acquired from the United States Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) through a collaborative agreement.