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Road Materials and Construction Techniques

L11 Type of pavement

UNIVERSIT DEGLI STUDI


DI MODENA E REGGIO EMILIA

UNIVERSIT DEGLI STUDI


DELLA REPUBBLICA DI SAN MARINO

Andrea Grilli, PhD

Contacts:
e-mail:andrea.grilli@unirsm.sm
skype ID: andreagrilliunirsm

Terminology
flexible pavement: pavimentazione flessibile (conglomerato bituminoso)
rigid pavement: pavimentazione rigida (conglomerato comentizio)
weathering: degradazione (causati da agenti atmosferici)
tack coat: mano dattacco
prime coat: mano di ancoraggio
wearing course: strato di usura
binder course: strato di binder o di collegamento

Andrea Grilli, PhD

Pavement courses
The pavement structure consists of sever layers in different materials and thickness. Each
layer has a specific function.
The subgrade is the bottom layer on which the pavement is built. Subgrade must be stiff and
durable enough to resist both construction and traffic loading.
The other courses upward are foundation, subbase, base, binder, wearing (surface layer)
courses. Thick courses can be constructed in multiple layers. In many cases, especially in
urban areas, all the layers above the subgrade are composed of AC (asphalt pavement, flexible
pavement) constructed in several layers (lifts). Generally the materials have higher
performance and cost as one moves up from the subgrade to the surface layer. Performance
and cost mainly depends on the dosage and type of binder and on the stricter specifications on
size, shape and quality of aggregates.
The wearing course must provide friction, noise control, safe driving and quick drainage of
water (prevent the entrance of excessive quantities of water into the underlying layers).
Moreover it should be not to stiff at low temperatures to avoid cracking caused by temperature
variations or weathering.
The binder course has to provide a regular and smooth surface on which the wearing course
is laid down. Moreover, it gives a contribution to distribute load.
The base course has to provide the stiffness to prevent excessive deflection, cracking and
structural rutting.
The subbase and foundation courses can be made up of less costly material. Their function is
to protect the subgrade and distribute loading and to provide a working platform for
construction.
Andrea Grilli, PhD

Selecting the type of pavement


The selection of the specific type of pavement for a project has to consider several factors
including traffic, soil, construction issues, climate, recycling options, cost, energy
consumption, material availability etc.
Type

Materials

Flexible

AC
+
unbound material (granular material)

Semi-rigid

AC
+
cement treated materials

Rigid

(wearing course in AC) + cement concrete slab


+
Granular material/cement treated materials

Andrea Grilli, PhD

Selecting the type of pavement


Flexible pavements bend or deflect due to traffic loads. A flexible pavement structure is
generally composed of several layers of materials which can accommodate this "flexing". On
the other hand, rigid pavements are composed of a Portland Cement Concrete (PCC) surface
course. Such pavements are substantially "stiffer" than flexible pavements due to the high
modulus of elasticity of the PCC material.
The rigid pavement tends to distribute the load over a relatively wide area of subgrade.
On the other hand, flexible pavement relies on a combination of layers for transmitting
load to the subgrade and uses more flexible surface course and distributes loads over a
smaller area.
Flexible pavements generally require maintenance or rehabilitation every 5 to 15 years. Rigid
pavements can often serve 20 to 40 years with little or no maintenance or rehabilitation.
However, when a flexible pavement requires major rehabilitation, the options are generally
less expensive and quicker to perform than for rigid pavements.

Andrea Grilli, PhD

Pavement structure, examples


Usura (conglomerato bituminoso drenante): 40 mm
Binder (conglomerato bituminoso con bitume modificato): 50 mm
Base (conglomerato bituminoso con bitume modificato): 200 mm

highway
Misto cementato: 300 mm

Usura (conglomerato bituminoso tradizionale): 50 mm


Binder (conglomerato bituminoso tradizionale): 60 mm
Base (conglomerato bituminoso tradizionale): 120 mm

secondary road
Misto granulare: 500 mm

Andrea Grilli, PhD