Influence of vehicular positions and thermal effects on structural behaviour of concrete pavement

Publication Type:
Journal Article
Journal of Mechanics of Materials and Structures, 2008, 3 (3), pp. 567 - 589
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Structural response of concrete pavements is influenced by the position of the axle loads and if critical load positions are not considered in concrete pavement analysis, the design may be inadequate and lead to early failure of the pavement. Whilst there has been a great deal of research conducted on concrete pavement performance and deterioration under vehicular loads and environmental forces, there is a lack of adequate information on effects of vehicular load positions on pavement responses. Critical positions of different axle groups in uncurled and curled jointed concrete pavement with different configurations were determined in the current study. Results indicate that structural performance of concrete pavements is significantly affected by boundary conditions between concrete slab and base. Corner loading was found to be critical in bonded concrete pavement. Corner loading is also critical when a separation occurs between unbonded concrete slab and base. Furthermore, the benefits offered by unbonded boundary condition cease at a certain differential temperature. Hence, a particular care needs to be considered in projects constructed in extremes of heat or cold. In presence of high differential temperature together with axle loading, joint faulting in unreinforced concrete pavements is affected by concrete slab thickness.
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