Calibration and Implementation of the AASHTO Mechanistic-Empirical Pavement Design Guide in Arizona

Project Details







Darter, Michael I; Titus-Glover, Leslie; Von Quintus, Harold; Bhattacharya, Biplab B; Mallela, Jagannath; Applied Research Associates


Arizona DOT


Bituminous overlays; Calibration; Composite pavements; Flexible pavements; Mathematical models; Mechanistic-empirical pavement design; Modulus of resilience; Rigid pavements; Validation

Project description

Abstract: This report documents efforts of the Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT) to implement the America Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) DARWin-ME pavement design guide in Arizona. The research team also prepared a practical stand-alone user guide that provides guidance for obtaining inputs, conducting design, and establishing the recommended pavement design. Implementation focused on identifying the desired pavement design application of flexible hot-mix asphalt (HMA) pavements, composite pavements (thin asphalt rubber friction course over jointed plain concrete pavement [JPCP] and continuously reinforced concrete pavement [CRCP]), JPCP, and HMA overlays of flexible pavement; characterizing materials and subgrades; determining traffic loadings (conducted under Darter et al. 2010); collecting and assembling DARWin-ME input data from 180 Long Term Pavement Performance and pavement management system sections of flexible, rigid, composite, and rehabilitated pavements; calibrating the DARWin-ME distress and International Roughness Index (IRI) prediction models to Arizona conditions; and training ADOT staff. Several biased distress and IRI models were corrected through the local calibration of Arizona pavements. Several key inputs were more accurately defined and Arizona defaults provided (e.g., subgrade resilient modulus). The calibration process improved these models through verification, validation, and calibration with Arizona data. Overall, the inputs and calibrated models will provide more accurate, reliable, and cost?effective pavement designs than designs created with global calibrations.