Probabilistic Design of Flexible Pavements

by Philippe L. Bourdeau, ETH, Switzerland,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Probabilistic Methods in Civil Engineering


Numerous random phenomena enter into the process of deterioration of pavements under the effect of traffic. It is felt that improvement in current design methods could be obtained by adopting a probabilistic viewpoint. The paper presents an extension in this sense of the empirical method derived from the AASHO Road Tests and modified by J.F. Shook and F.N. Finn. A second moment approximation of the necessary equivalent thickness is evaluated, which accounts for the variability of the bearing capacity of the subgrade. The decisive influence of this later factor on the reliability of a pavement structure is demonstrated, and the validity of the proposed model is verified in the case of the AASHO Road Tests.

Subject Headings: Pavement design | Asphalt pavements | Probability | Highway and road design | Pavement condition | Approximation methods | Load bearing capacity | Traffic management

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