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Guide to Pavement Technology Part 2: Pavement Structural Design

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Publication no: AGPT02-12 Pages: 275
Published: 06 March 2012


Part 2 of the Austroads Guide to Pavement Technology - Pavement Structural Design contains procedures for the design of flexible pavements consisting of unbound granular materials, flexible pavements that contain one or more bound layers, and rigid pavements, such as concrete.

This is the third revision of this guide and features substantial changes in editorial as well as technical changes in sections.

This guide is ideal for use when designing flexible and rigid pavements for conventional traffic. It is also used to develop design charts for flexible pavements for specific conditions as required by the user (example charts are included in the Guide for specific design input and performance parameters).

An integral part of the pavement design process is an assessment of how well the outcome of the design, the constructed pavement, will perform. Because of the many factors which must be evaluated to design pavements, there is no absolute certainty that the desired performance will be achieved. This part provides guidance on how to design projects to a desired reliability of outlasting the design traffic. This part covers the assessment of input parameters needed for design, design methods for flexible and rigid pavements and gives guidance to the economic comparisons of alternative pavement designs.

Designers should note the following limitations of the part in terms of its scope:

  • The design procedures described apply for pavements subjected to a minimum design traffic loading of 105 ESA which is for moderate-to-heavily trafficked roads. For lightly-trafficked roads environmental distress has a more significant effect on pavement performance.
  • Whilst the mechanistic procedures presented in this part can be applied to any pavement type and traffic load, the pavement types addressed relate to public roads subjected to normal highway traffic only – and not to industrial pavements subjected to off road vehicle loads such as fork lifts and straddle carriers.
  • The procedures in the guide are applicable to traffic with normal transverse load distribution (wander) within traffic lanes.  For example, standard deviation of truck traffic wander of 200 mm to 350 mm has been reported (Jameson, Sharp & Vertessy 1992a).  Caution is advised in using the Guide for pavements with truck wander different from normal highway loading.

Updating Guide to Pavement Technology Part 2

In May 2013 Austroads published two reports recommending updates to Guide to Pavement Technology Part 2: Pavement Structural Design.

  • AP-R434-13 Review of Definition of Modified Granular Materials and Bound Materials recommends changes to the Unconfined Compressive Strength (UCS) design criteria.
  • AP-R435-13 Proposed Procedures for the Design of Pavements on Selected Subgrade and Lime Stabilised Subgrade Materials recommends design methods.

In June 2014 Austroads published a research report recommending updates to the Guide.

  • AP-R462-14 Cemented Materials Characterisation: Final Report recommends changes that relate to the characterisation of cement treated crushed rocks and natural gravels. (Note no changes are proposed to the design procedures for lean-mix concrete). Appendix E and Appendix F of the report contain the proposed revised text for Section 6.4 of the Guide.

In March 2016 Austroads published a research report recommending updates to the Guide.

  • AP-R511-16 Improved Design Procedures for Asphalt Pavements recommends the introduction of flexural modulus master curves for the characterisation of the resilient response of asphalt in pavement design. Appendix A contains the proposed revised text to Section 6.5 of the Guide.

It is anticipated that these draft procedures will be used by practitioners and revised as necessary for inclusion in the next edition of the Guide.


Guide Review

This Guide is currently under review. We expect to publish a new edition in November 2017.


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