Geosynthetics have been proposed and used on a limited basis to reinforce the base course layer of flexible pavements for the purpose of reducing base course thickness. A review of the literature shows conflicting results regarding the level of performance improvement offered by placing geosynthetics in the base course layer. It appears that the mechanisms of base course reinforcement in flexible pavements are poorly understood, making it difficult to estimate the improvement in performance given a particular set of site conditions. Indeed, a comprehensive design solution for the problem has not been proposed. Research has been initiated by the Montana Department of Transportation to understand if and how geosynthetics can be used to reinforce roadway base course layers. This research, as currently planned, may involve the construction and monitoring of geosynthetically reinforced full-scale field test sections subject to real traffic loading. Stress, strain, moisture content and temperature sensors would be used to monitor performance of the test sections. The research is being conducted in phases. Initially, a literature review was conducted to establish a need for further research. With this need identified, the first phase of the research was initiated. This final report discusses the work performed under Phase I of the project. The objective of the Phase I research was to examine instrumentation proposed for use in the field test sections to be constructed under a subsequent phase of the project. This objective was accomplished by constructing a pilot test section with certain instruments placed on the geosynthetics and within the base course and asphalt concrete layers. These instruments were monitored for a 4 month period. Laboratory wide-width tension tests were performed on the geosynthetics used in the pilot test section for the purpose of comparing the measured strain from the instrument to the global strain experienced by the material. From this work, conclusions are made regarding the appropriateness of certain instruments and installation techniques for use in field test sections. Conclusions are also made regarding the manner in which the local strain from the instruments attached to the geosynthetics relates to the global strain experienced by the material.

  • Corporate Authors:

    Montana State University, Bozeman

    Department of Civil Engineering and Engineering Mechanics
    Bozeman, MT  United States  59717

    Montana Department of Transportation

    2701 Prospect Avenue
    P.O. Box 201001
    Helena, MT  United States  59620-1001

    Federal Highway Administration

    1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
    Washington, DC  United States  20590
  • Authors:
    • Perkins, S W
    • Lapeyre, J A
  • Publication Date: 1996-9-30


  • English

Media Info

  • Features: Appendices; Figures; Photos; Tables;
  • Pagination: 163 p.

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00728356
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Report/Paper Numbers: FHWA/MT-96/8126, Final Report
  • Contract Numbers: 8126
  • Created Date: Nov 1 1996 12:00AM