Characterization of load transfer behavior for bonded concrete overlays on asphalt

Manik Barman, Julie M. Vandenbossche, Zichang Li

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


A bonded concrete overlay on asphalt (BCOA) is a rehabilitation method for moderately distressed asphalt pavements by relatively thin plain cement concrete or fiber-reinforced concrete slabs. The joint load transfer behavior for BCOAs plays a significant role in the long-term performance. Poor load transfer across the joints of the concrete slabs initiates debonding of the asphalt layer from the concrete slabs, which promotes the development of corner cracks or longitudinal cracks. However, because of the tediousness involved in characterizing the joint load transfer behavior of BCOAs, this important aspect is not accounted for in many available mechanistic-empirical BCOA design procedures. The influences of joint load transfer behavior on the performance of BCOA are discussed. The joint load transfer behavior for BCOAs with 1.52- × 1.83-m (5- × 6-ft) slabs and 1.22- × 1.22-m (4- × 4-ft) slabs is analyzed with the finite element method. The load transfer contributed by the asphalt layer, as well as the concrete slab, is characterized as a function of the BCOA design features. Finally, a method is proposed to determine the nondimensional joint stiffness (AGG∗) for BCOAs as a function of the structural design features of the pavement section. The AGG∗ is significant in that it is the factor commonly used to characterize joint load transfer behavior when pavements are designed with a mechanistic-based design approach.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)143-151
Number of pages9
JournalTransportation Research Record
StatePublished - Jan 1 2015


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