Determination of Laboratory Aging Conditions for Hot Mix Asphalt Cracking Test (IDEAL-CT)

Previous WSDOT studies have indicated that a majority of asphalt pavements fail as a result of cracking first. This is especially concerning with the increased use of recycled asphalt pavement (RAP) and recycled asphalt shingles (RAS), both of which can become severely oxidized and brittle, which can lead to accelerated pavement cracking. WSDOT plans to implement a cracking performance test as a part of hot mix asphalt (HMA) design to improve the cracking performance of asphalt pavement and has selected the IDEAL-CT test. However, before a cracking test can be conducted on an HMA mixture, the HMA samples must be appropriately aged. One of the goals of this project is to develop an aging protocol that will accurately mimic the aging of pavement in the field at the time that cracking occurs—in Washington, typically between three and five years after overlay construction. The researchers also intend to develop a mix design procedure that will improve the cracking resistance of mixes with high percentages of RAP, RAS, and reclaimed asphalt materials. Each year WSDOT spends more than $100 million on asphalt roadways. The results of this study should increase the service lives of asphalt pavements, thereby reducing life cycle costs and also the frequency of traffic disruption during repair.

Principal Investigator: Haifang Wen, Civil and Environmental Engineering, WSU
Sponsor: WSDOT
WSDOT Technical Monitor: Steve Davis
WSDOT Project Manager: Mustafa Mohamedali
Scheduled completion: June 2023