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Flexible overlays for rigid pavements : final report, February 2010.
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    Final report; 1/2006-8/2009.
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  • Abstract:
    Approximately 45% of the New Jersey Department of Transportation’s (NJDOT) roadways are

    composite (hot mix asphalt overlying Portland cement concrete). Hot mix asphalt (HMA) is used as

    the overlying material because of its inexpensive nature when compared to most PCC

    rehabilitation/reconstruction alternatives. In addition to being economical, HMA also allows faster

    repairs resulting in shorter construction duration and lower “User” delay costs. However, due to the

    majority of the PCC pavements being in average to poor condition, many HMA overlays are exposed

    to extreme movements (both vertical and horizontal). The combination of associated load and

    environmentally induced movements creates complex stresses and strains in the vicinity of expansion

    joints and cracks in the PCC, thus dramatically reducing the life of the HMA overlay, typically in the

    form of reflective cracking. It should be noted that there currently does not exist an AASHTO

    accepted pavement design method for the pavement design of composite pavements.

    A research project was undertaken to evaluate how the NJDOT can optimize the use of hot mix

    asphalt overlays when rehabilitating PCC/composite pavements. Field test sections were evaluated

    and instrumented to measure the PCC joint movements and pavement specific traffic conditions.

    Asphalt mixtures placed on the test sections were sampled and evaluated under laboratory tests that

    model field movements and conditions. The collected field and laboratory data, as well as collected

    Literature Review information and National Survey information, provided valuable information used to

    develop an asphalt mixture design and selection procedure for the NJDOT. The procedure was able

    to predict the early (only 2 years of service life was available for comparison) reflective cracking, as

    determined by the percent of PCC joints cracked, to within 9% of the measured values.

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