Rigid and Stiff Airport Pavement

by Henry P. Carothers,

Serial Information: Journal of the Aero-Space Transport Division, 1964, Vol. 90, Issue 1, Pg. 17-40

Document Type: Journal Paper


A logical testing and design approach for rigid airport paving is reported. A reasonable formulation, design, and testing procedure is developed for stiff airport paving or stiff subbase. Four novel design features are presented: (1) The highly elusive Westergaard's subgrade modulus is converted to a fixed elastic modulus; (2) stiff materials, such as soil-cement or stabilized base, are tested by beam; (3) flexible materials and soils are tested by designed triaxial tests; and (4) pavements are designed against both overstress and excessive deflection. Design of rigid pavement on stiff subbase is illustrated for a future supersonic transport. Stiff pavement design is illustrated for light aircraft with low tire pressure. Simple circles, curves, and ratios permit complete rational design of rigid and stiff airport paving, separate or combined.

Subject Headings: Pavement design | Airport and airfield pavements | Airports and airfields | Plastic design | Soil modulus | Concrete pavements | Base course | Construction materials

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