Better Roads Staff
Keeping pace with this important technology wave, the American Concrete Pavement Association (ACPA) introduced its first web-based applications last November, and has since introduced more than 40 web-based tools, or web applications, via a special web portal, http://www.apps.acpa.org. ACPA has released new iPhone and iPad applications.
The web apps are divided into several categories including some general interest apps, design apps, and construction and pavement analysis tools, as well as interfaces to design software. Although these apps are germane to concrete pavement placement, repair or preservation, many of these web-based tools are more general and will help people with broader construction interests.
One very popular web app is ACPA’s National Concrete Overlays Explorer at http://www.apps.acpa.org/apps/OverlayPass.html. The exploration begins with a map featuring push pins, and adjacent to it, a sidebar menu of project details that serve as filters. By activating a push pin or selecting from the sidebar menu, the user can view project construction details, photos, performance information and much more. The app is designed to answer questions agencies, consultants and contractors have about key project details, for example where concrete overlays have been used and how they have performed.
The general-interest apps include a database of state agency practices, a glossary of concrete pavement industry and general transportation-construction terms, a units converter with many industry-specific conversions not included in other online converters, and other useful tools that can benefit construction professionals on the grade or in the office.
Design apps include a bonded concrete overlay on asphalt thickness designer. Developed by ACPA with support of the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), the National Concrete Pavement Technology Center (CP Tech Center) and the Illinois Center for Transportation (ICT) at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC), this application is based primarily on the results of FHWA-ICT-08-016, “Design and Concrete Material Requirements for Ultra-Thin Whitetopping.” This is the formal name of a research project conducted in cooperation with the ICT, the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) and FHWA.
The online thickness designer allows pavement design professionals or others with engineering expertise to enter general design factors, existing pavement structure details, concrete material details and factors related to the concrete overlay to determine the necessary bonded concrete overlay thickness.
Among the 18 design apps are a Westergaard stress and deflection solver, a compression seal joint width calculator and an online thickness designer based on ACPA’s popular StreetPave software for conventional jointed plain concrete pavements. Also included is an online k-value calculator, as well as an equivalent single axle load (ESAL) calculator that allows users to estimate future or historic traffic counts.
Construction and pavement analysis tools include an extremely popular evaporation rate calculator; a strength converter that converts between compressive, flexural, split tensile strengths and modulus of elasticity; a pavement joint noise calculator, and a concrete temperature calculator. Users also can find highway specifications used in airport pavement applications, calculate area and volume, determine staking intervals and the maximum recommended joint spacing, and perform more than a dozen different construction and pavement analysis operations using ACPA’s web apps.
In the pavement design software section, there are interfaces to evaluation versions of ACPA’s StreetPave roadway pavement design tool, WinPAS roadway pavement thickness design and evaluation tool (based on the 1993 AASHTO Design Guide for Pavement Structures), AirPave airport pavement design tool, and the newest design tool in ACPA’s software suite, PerviousPave, a pervious concrete pavement design tool. The pavement design software section also includes links to:
• COMPASS: computer-based guidelines for job-specific optimization of paving concrete. This tool is currently under review by the FHWA and is not an official set of guidelines, yet. When accepted by FHWA, it will result in a truly performance-driven mixture design system.
• HIPERPAV III (HIgh PERformance Concrete PAVing) software, developed by the Transtec Group for the FHWA, and used to analyze the early age behavior of jointed concrete pavements continuously reinforced concrete pavements and bonded concrete overlays.
• EverFE 2.24, a 3-D finite-element analysis tool used for simulating the response of jointed plain concrete pavement (JPCP) systems to axle loads and environmental effects. EverFE was jointly developed by the Universities of Maine and Washington with funding from the Washington and California State Departments of Transportation.
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