Advancing New Technologies as part of Roadway Construction Activities

At the field, there are multiple methods of charging pavers, which varies between different manufacturers. They basically deposit the materials across the width of the paving operations. I would like to discuss the rolling/compaction of the materials with new technologies to achieve the specified densities for long-term performance of the pavements.

IC (Intelligent Compaction) is the latest technology to hit the streets. Simply stated, IC is advanced technology that is added to the double drum vibratory rollers that have GPS (global-positioning system) systems to track the rolling pattern by the operators, temperature sensors to monitor the surface temperature of the mixture, and an accelerometer to the drum to monitor the speed, amplitude, and frequency of the compaction operations on on-board screens. IC technologies are for the improvement of the contractors’ quality control operations. States like California are using IC on all their asphalt materials projects of greater than 5000 tons, Minnesota is nearly 100% on soils and asphalt materials, and Missouri is advancing more than a dozen new projects this summer with IC.

The Federal Highway Admin., and AASHTO (American Assn. of State Highway and Transportation Officials) have been working with the States on providing users the necessary materials to implement the technology. Currently, we have multiple heavy manufacturers such as Wirtgen (Hamm), Sakai, Caterpillar, etc., that have IC systems for use on their rollers that have been involved with IC in the U.S. for about 10 years. IC systems can be used on both asphalt pavements and soil construction applications. IC rollers from these manufacturers can be viewed and discussed with their representatives at CONEXPO-CON/AGG.

New technology is not an excuse for not following best practices and the NAPA (National Asphalt Pavement Assn.) is putting on a year-long effort to get back to the basics regarding good construction practices.

By Victor (Lee) Gallivan, President, Gallivan Consulting, Inc.

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