Traditionally, detrimental effects of frost action are reduced by thick fills or by excavation and removal of large quantities of frost-susceptible material and replacement with a thick layer of non-frost-susceptible material. However, incorporating an insulating layer within the pavement structure can often provide a cost-effective alternative for protecting the subgrade from frost penetration. In 1986 the runway, taxiway, and parking apron at Newton Field, a small airport in Jackman, Maine, were reconstructed using a layer of extruded polystyrene insulation 51 mm (2 in.) thick as part of the pavement structure. Because test results from the first winter of observation showed substantial frost penetration beneath the runway insulation, four additional test sections of various combinations of insulation and sand subbase thickness were constructed adjacent to the parking apron in 1987. The insulated test sections, which were constructed under tighter controls, on a firm working platform, and in a slightly drier location than the runway, experienced very little frost penetration into the subgrade. The good performance of the insulated test sections as well as runway observations, methods used to investigate insulation integrity, and theories considered to explain the relatively poor performance of some sections of the insulated runway pavement are discussed.


  • English

Media Info

  • Features: Figures; Photos; References;
  • Pagination: p. 47-55
  • Monograph Title: Environmental moisture effects on transportation facilities and nonearth materials' thermal effects on pavements
  • Serial:

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00712979
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS, TRB
  • Created Date: Oct 10 1995 12:00AM