The continued use of structural plastics in consumer products, industry, and transportation represents a potential source for durable, long lasting, and recyclable roadways. Costs to dispose of reinforced plastics can be similar to procuring new asphalt with mechanical performance exceeding that of the traditional road surface.
This project examines improved material development times by leveraging advanced computational material models based on validated experimental data. By testing traditional asphalt and select carbon and glass reinforced composites, both new and recycled, it is possible to develop a finite element simulation that can predict the material characteristics under a number of loads virtually, and with less lead time compared to experimental testing. From the tested specimens, composites show minimal strength degradation when recycled and used within the asphalt design envelopes considered, with an average of 49% less wear, two orders of magnitude higher compressive strength, and three orders for tensile strength. Predictive computational analysis using the validated material models developed for this investigation confirms the long-term durability.
Digital Object Identifier
Mineta Transportation Institute URL
Recycled materials, Asphalt pavements
Construction Engineering and Management | Transportation Engineering
Daniel Whisler, Rafael Gomez Consarnau, and Ryan Coy. "Novel Eco-Friendly, Recycled Composites for Improved CA Road Surfaces" Mineta Transportation Institute Publications (2021). https://doi.org/10.31979/mti.2021.2046