Lab of the Future—Mixture Design and Analysis for Optimized Concrete Paving Performance
The Mixture Design and Analysis (MDA) track of the CP Road Map collaborative research program is one of the most fundamental areas and important emerging issues for concrete pavement (CP) research. The economy, constructability, practicality, and, ultimately, successful long-term performance of pavement are tied to the selection and use of quality materials, proportioned and mixed to provide the design properties. The CP Mix track research and the developing CP mixture manual on the design, proportioning, and control of concrete mixtures are needed since many other research tracks are dependent on mixtures and materials used. What needs to be in the CP mixture manual procedure? What laboratory equipment and procedures are needed? The lab of the future must be equipped to analyze and evaluate concrete mixtures and materials specifically for slipform concrete pavements.
Collaboration for the CP Mix track began at the Strategic Forum held in October 2006 at the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA’s) Turner–Fairbank Highway Research Center (TFHRC) and through the enthusiastic involvement of industry, university researchers, and State departments of transportation. A successful pooledfund study on Material and Construction Optimization for Prevention of Premature Pavement Distress in PCC Pavements and the continued field activities of FHWA’s Mobile Concrete Laboratory have provided real-world mixture analysis, and an even wider group in the Midwest Concrete Consortium has signaled its interest in future CP Mix research activities. The Concrete Laboratories at TFHRC are developing research into a “Lab of the Future,” and through collaboration with partners, contractors, and customers, are researching concrete mixtures and evaluation tools. This paper describes the goals, challenges, and opportunities of the MDA track. The objective is to advance the Performance-Based Concrete Pavement Mix Design System under the CP Road Map and to come up with a mixture development and verification strategy for both the up-front project design phase and the field quality assurance and adjustments to follow.
Presented at FHWA’s International Conference on Optimizing Paving Concrete Mixtures and Accelerated Concrete Pavement Construction and Rehabilitation in 2007.
Authors: Richard Meininger and Jussara Tanesi