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Development, calibration, and validation of performance prediction models for the Texas M-E flexible pavement design system.
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Development, calibration, and validation of performance prediction models for the Texas M-E flexible pavement design system.
  • Alternative Title:
    Project title: Develop test procedures to characterize material response behavior and transfer functions for TxDOT M-E design
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    Technical report; Sept. 2008-Aug. 2009.
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  • Abstract:
    This study was intended to recommend future directions for the development of TxDOT’s Mechanistic-Empirical

    (TexME) design system. For stress predictions, a multi-layer linear elastic system was evaluated and its validity was

    verified by comparing the measured tensile strains under accelerated pavement (ALF) loading with the computed

    values. After reviewing all existing pavement performance models, the VESYS model was recommended for predicting

    flexible pavement layer rutting and an Overlay Tester-based fatigue cracking model was proposed, which includes both

    crack initiation and propagation models.

    For hot-mix asphalt (HMA) rutting predictions, the dynamic modulus test and repeated load test are proposed to

    provide material properties. The proposed HMA rutting model was calibrated using the rutting data from the NCAT

    test track and the Texas LTPP-SPS 5 test sections. The proposed fatigue cracking models were calibrated with

    performance data from NCAT. Resilient modulus and permanent deformation testing is recommended for base and

    subgrade materials and future research efforts are required to improve the repeatability of the permanent deformation

    test. For stabilized bases the traditional fatigue models are recommended and calibration factors were proposed based

    on existing accelerated pavement test data.

    A field experiment was conducted to evaluate the adequacy of the LoadGage program to compute allowable axle

    load limits for thin pavements. On sections trafficked to failure, very good results were obtained when moisture

    correction factors were applied to the laboratory measured engineering properties. Implementation should proceed by

    incorporating the proposed models and default material properties into a design software package, upgrading the

    available repeated load equipment, performing additional calibration, and developing additional default values for a

    w ider range of Texas materials.

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