Development and field evaluation of energy-based criteria for top-down cracking performance of hot mix asphalt
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A detailed analysis and evaluation of 22 field test sections throughout the state of Florida resulted in the development and verification of energy-based criteria for top-down cracking of hot mix asphalt. There was no single mixture property or characteristic that could reliably predict top-down cracking performance of hot mix asphalt. A parameter termed the Energy Ratio, which was derived using the HMA Fracture Mechanics Model developed at the University of Florida, was determined to accurately distinguish between pavements that exhibited top-down cracking and those that did not, except for mixtures with excessively low or unusually high dissipated creep strain energy thresholds. A discussion covers the description of field test sections; effect of mixture properties on cracking performance; development of energy-based criteria for top-down cracking performance; and development of mixture specification criteria. This is an abstract of a paper presented at the Association of Asphalt Paving Technologists 2004 Technology Sessions (Baton Rouge, LA 3/10-18/2004).