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Design of Rigid Pavements


(1984) and AASHTO (1993) provide easy-to-use design aids for designers to read off the increased k for various thickness of subbase added, as presented in Section 9.9.1 of this chapter. Instead of using the dense liquid model, pavement foundation can also be modeled as an elastic solid. The required structural properties for the foundation materials are the resilient modulus and Poisson’s ratio. The Poisson ratio, though necessary, has very little effect on the computed surface deflections of the pavement. Poisson ratios of 0.35 and 0.40 may be used for untreated granular subgrade and fine-grained soils, respectively, and a value of 0.20 may be used for cement or lime treated subgrade soils. Procedures for testing untreated subgrade soils and untreated base or subbase materials for determination of resilient modulus Mr are found in AASHTO test method T 307 (AASHTO, 2004). However, many highway laboratories are not equipped to perform the resilient modulus test for soils and base and subbase materials, it is common practice to estimate Mr through empirical correlation with other soil properties. Equation 9.7 is one such correlation suggested by the 1993 AASHTO Guide for fine-grained soils with soaked California Bearing Ratio (CBR) of 10 or less: Mr ðlb=in:2 Þ ¼ 1500 £ CBR ð9:7Þ

Other correlations are also found in the literature such as the work by Van Til et al. (1972). For unbound base and subbase materials, Mr may be estimated from the following correlations: Mr ðlb=in:2 Þ ¼ 740 £ CBR Mr ðlb=in:2 Þ ¼ 440 £ CBR Mr ðlb=in:2 Þ ¼ 340 £ CBR Mr ðlb=in:2 Þ ¼ 250 £ CBR foru ¼ 100 lb=in:2 foru ¼ 30 lb=in:2 foru ¼ 20 lb=in:2 foru ¼ 10 lb=in:2 ð9:8Þ ð9:9Þ ð9:10Þ ð9:11Þ

where u is the sum of principal stresses. CBR of subgrade soil, base or subbase material is determined by means of a standard laboratory test as specified by ASTM test method D1883 (ASTM, 2003e). CBR of these materials can also be measured using the in-situ procedure outlined in ASTM test method D4429 (ASTM, 2003f).

9.5 Computation of Load-Induced Stresses: Conventional Methods
9.5.1 Westergaard’s Closed-Form Solutions
Westergaard (1926a, 1926b) was the first to propose a complete theory of structural behavior of rigid pavements. This theory is still the basis of computing load-induced stresses in many of the design procedures in use today. Westergaard modeled the pavement structure as a homogenous, isotropic, elastic, thin slab resting on a Winkler (dense liquid) foundation. From existing test data and experience, he identified the three most critical loading positions, the interior (also called center), edge, and corner, as illustrated in Figure 9.4 and derived equations for computing the critical stresses and deflections for loads placed at the edge, corner and center, respectively. Westergaard made the following simplifying assumptions in his analysis: (1) The concrete pavement of known thickness acts as an infinitely large, homogenous, isotropic elastic slab; (2) The foundation acts like a bed of springs (dense liquid foundation model) under the slab; (3) There is full contact between the slab and foundation; (4) All forces act normal to the surface where shear and frictional forces are negligible; (5) The semi-infinite foundation has no rigid bottom; and (6) The slab is of uniform thickness, and the neutral axis is at its mid depth. Westergaard’s original equations have been modified by different researchers, mainly to bring them into better agreement with field measurements.
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