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Evaluation of the Base/Subgrade Soil under Repeated Loading : Phase I – Laboratory Testing and Numerical Modeling of Geogrid Reinforced Bases in Flexible Pavement
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    Interim report; Aug. 2003-May 2007.
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  • Abstract:
    This report documents the results of a study that was conducted to characterize the behavior of geogrid reinforced base

    course materials. The research was conducted through an experimental testing and numerical modeling programs. The

    experimental testing program included performing different laboratory tests to evaluate the effect of various factors on the

    performance geogrid reinforced base course materials. Finite element models were also developed to investigate the

    benefits of placing geogrids within the base course layer in a flexible pavement structure. The results of the experimental

    testing demonstrated that the inclusion of the geogrid reinforcement layer(s) improved the compressive strength and

    stiffness of base course materials under static loading. This improvement was more pronounced at higher strain levels.

    Furthermore, the results showed that the geogrid significantly reduced the base course material permanent deformation

    under cyclic loading, but it did not show appreciable effect on their resilient deformation. The finite modeling program

    showed that the geogrid reinforcement reduced the lateral, vertical, and shear strains within the base course and subgrade

    layers. Furthermore, the geogrid had an appreciable reduction in permanent deformation for pavement sections built on

    top of weak subgrade soils with medium to thin base layer thickness, with the thin base layer thickness showing greater

    values of improvement. However, negligible to modest reinforcement effect on permanent deformation was obtained for

    sections having a firm subgrade or thick base layer thickness. The geogrid reinforcement had modest to high values of

    improvement in fatigue life of pavement structure.

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