Cumulative Deflection and Pavement Performance

by William H. Highter, (A.M.ASCE), Asst. Prof.; Dept. of Civil and Environmental Engrg., Clarkson Coll. of Tech., Potsdam, N.Y.,
Milton E. Harr, (F.ASCE), Prof. of Soil Mechanics; Purdue Univ., West Lafayette, Ind.,

Serial Information: Transportation Engineering Journal of ASCE, 1975, Vol. 101, Issue 3, Pg. 537-551

Document Type: Journal Paper


Pavement engineers have not been able to predict the performance of pavement systems prior to their actual construction and operational utilization. A solution to this problem is obtained by verifying the following hypothesis. There is a functional relationship between the cumulative peak deflections sustained by a given pavement system and the condition of that system. The hypothesis is tested by applying it to load-deflection and performance trend data gathered in the AASHO Road Test. Regression analysis is performed to find a relationship that predicts the level of the Present Serviceability Index (PSI) as a function of the structural design of the pavement and the cumulative deflections imparted to the pavement. It is concluded that, in the future, performance trends in airfield and highway pavements can be predicted from knowledge of the anticipated cumulative total peak deflections.

Subject Headings: Pavement deflection | Pavement design | Airport and airfield pavements | Regression analysis | Highways and roads | Verification | Displacement (mechanics) | Load tests

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