Forensic Investigation of HMA Test Sections for Laboratory and Field Comparisons

Proper forensic analysis must be conducted to assess the validity of field performance data before it can be used for future laboratory testing comparisons, model development, and design calibration. The objective of this paper was to conduct a forensic investigation explaining the field performance results and to assess the validity of the results for further laboratory to field performance comparisons. Deflection data from the Falling Weight Deflectometer (FWD), responses from embedded instrumentation within the pavement structure, visual distress surveys, rutting measurements, and roughness measurements from test cells at the MnROAD research facility were analyzed. Eight hot-mix asphalt test cells were constructed with varying low temperature cracking susceptibility. The sections were constructed on westbound interstate 94 and over 2.7 million equivalent single axle loads were applied during the study from November 2016 to June 2020. Significant cracking was observed in the sections however most of the cracking was not low temperature related. Despite the cracking, roughness remained fairly consistent throughout. Rutting performance were acceptable for all cells. FWD data indicated that the base and subgrade in the highly modified asphalt binder (HiMA) cell were not consistent with the other cells and therefore it is not recommended to utilize HiMA performance data further in laboratory to field comparisons. The best field performance was observed in Cell 20 which used a PG 52S – 34 binder with 30% RAP.


  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: Digital/other
  • Features: Figures; References; Tables;
  • Pagination: 18p

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01763526
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Report/Paper Numbers: TRBAM-21-01690
  • Files: TRIS, TRB, ATRI
  • Created Date: Dec 23 2020 11:03AM