Minnesota Department of Transportation
The use of recycled materials promotes sustainability in roadway construction by reducing the consumption of energy and emission of greenhouse gases associated with mining and the production of virgin aggregate (VA). Recycled asphalt pavement (RAP) and recycled concrete aggregate (RCA) have comparable characteristics to VA that have been used in roadway base course applications. This study develops a database for RAP and RCA material characteristics, including gradation, compaction, resilient modulus (Mᵣ), California bearing ratio (CBR), and saturated hydraulic conductivity (Kₛₐₜ). In addition, this study summarizes construction specifications provided by several departments of transportation (DOTs) regarding the use of recycled aggregates in pavement systems. The effects of the presence of RAP and RCA in aggregate matrices on the engineering and index properties of aggregates are investigated and some trends are observed. For example, the study finds a higher RAP content reveals a higher summary Mr (SMr), and a higher RCA content causes an increase in optimum moisture content (OMC) and a decrease in maximum dry unit weight (MDU). In addition, a series of AASHTOWare Pavement Mechanistic-Empirical (ME) Design (PMED) analyses are conducted for three traffic volumes [low (1,000 AADTT), medium (7,500 AADTT), and high (25,000 AADTT)] with the material inputs collected for the database to determine whether different values of different characteristics of RCA and RAP can be used in flexible/rigid pavement designs. Results show that Mr has a higher effect on pavement distress predictions compared to gradation and saturated hydraulic conductivity (Kₛₐₜ).
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