Aircraft-Based Pavement Surface Roughness Assessment

It has long been recognized that each aircraft responds differently to a pavement surface roughness pattern. On the basis of that observation, the development of two aircraft-based roughness assessment criteria is discussed. Both allow the analysis of pavement surface profiles obtained from surveys carried out at 1-m intervals. The single wavelength roughness criterion looks for acceptable and excessive single double amplitudes in the profiles of runways and taxiways. The overall roughness criterion considers the template and the root-mean-square (RMS) approaches. Both work as a function of the critical wavelengths (Lc) and double amplitudes (2A). These parameters are estimated for each aircraft as a function of its velocity at the takeoff rotational point and the aircraft response frequency. For the template approach, windows are constructed with Lc and 2A for each particular aircraft for identifying the acceptable and excessive roughness areas in the profiles. The RMS approach initially estimates RMS limit values for acceptable and excessive roughness for each aircraft on the basis of its critical wavelength. Values of RMS are estimated for runway segments with the same lengths of the critical wavelengths and then compared with the RMS limit values. Excellent agreement was observed between the single wavelength roughness criterion and the FAA and International Civil Aviation Organization criteria. In addition, excessive bump deformations obtained by other authors for Georgia’s Hartsfield–Jackson Atlanta International Airport Runway 8L-26R were found to be above the same criterion’s excessive roughness curve.


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  • Accession Number: 01043986
  • Record Type: Publication
  • ISBN: 9780309104333
  • Files: TRIS, TRB, ATRI
  • Created Date: Feb 8 2007 4:38PM