Subsurface Joint Deterioration Detection: A MnROAD Blind Test Comparison of Ultrasound Array Technology with Conventional Nondestructive Methods
This paper presents the results of a blind test evaluation of various nondestructive testing techniques including well established methods such as chain dragging, rod sounding, and GPR as compared to an emerging ultrasonic array technology in determining the extent of the concrete joint deterioration. Nondestructive testing at two concrete pavement joints at MnROAD was performed and the results were independently evaluated and submitted to MnDOT. Significant discrepancies in subsurface deterioration assessments were observed among these techniques. Forensic evaluation (trenching and coring) were utilized to resolve the discrepancies in test results. It was concluded that the ultrasound array analysis was the only method able to accurately determine the horizontal extent of the deterioration otherwise undetected by the other available nondestructive evaluation methods. Additionally, ultrasonic tomography analysis was able to determine the depth of the deterioration. This makes this emerging technology an attractive alternative to traditional NDT methods for concrete pavement joint assessment. Paper submitted for the Transportation Research Board 92nd Annual Meeting, 13-17 January 2013.