Revisiting Thermal Models for Understanding the Effect of Climate Change on Pavement Performance and the Effect of Pavements on Urban Heat Islands

Temperature profiles are a fundamental input into mechanistic-empirical pavement analysis and design, and the enhanced integrated climactic model (EICM) is the state-of-the-practice for calculating those profiles. The EICM has also been used in mechanistic-empirical analysis to evaluate the effects of climate change on pavements and to estimate the effects of pavements on urban heat islands. The calculations in the EICM for pavement temperatures can be split into two areas: the thermal model describing conductance of temperatures throughout the pavement as well as the convective terms at the pavement surface, and an energy balance model to predict the solar radiation at the surface of the pavement. As is shown in this paper, the current EICM models over-predict temperatures during hot times and in no-wind conditions. This result implies that the increases in pavement temperatures predicted to occur with climate change is likewise overestimated. Conversely, because the convection coefficient is incorrect, the predicted amount of energy contributing to urban heat islands will also not be correctly predicted using the current EICM models. Although improvements to the solar model are noted, this paper focuses on improvements to the thermal model using modern heat transfer principles and data from the Long-Term Pavement Performance database. This paper improves upon the EICM methodology by correcting the convection coefficient and noting corrections to the solar radiation calculations.


  • English

Media Info

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

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01763697
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Report/Paper Numbers: TRBAM-21-01332
  • Files: TRIS, TRB, ATRI
  • Created Date: Dec 23 2020 11:09AM