Analysis of aggregate imaging system (AIMS) measurements and their relationship to asphalt pavement skid resistance



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This thesis consists of two parts. The first part includes analyses of the correlation between the results of two Aggregate Imaging System (AIMS) units. These analyses have led to refinements of the AIMS analysis methods of angularity and texture, which resulted in reduced variability in the results and better correlation between the two AIMS units. The refined analysis methods were used to establish a database of the shape characteristics of about 100 aggregate samples from the state of Texas and to propose a new method for the classification of aggregates based on their shape characteristics. This new method of classification is for use in the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) wet weather accident reduction program (WWARP). The use of AIMS texture index and variability in texture within an aggregate source is proposed instead of the British Polish Value (BPV) for classifying aggregates used in pavement surfaces. The second part of the thesis investigates the relationship between shape characteristics and asphalt pavement skid resistance. Many states have implemented wet weather accident reduction programs aimed at maintaining acceptable levels of pavement skid resistance. Proper aggregate selection before construction aids in maintaining acceptable levels of skid resistance throughout the life of the pavement. Several predictive models of pavement skid resistance have been developed over the years. Some of these models account for the influence of aggregate characteristics on pavement skid resistance, primarily through incorporating the results of the BPV test in the model. However, the BPV test is known to have high variability and dependence on experimental factors that are not related to the actual aggregate resistance to polishing. AIMS offers a method to measure aggregate shape characteristics directly in a relatively short period of time. The new method for relating aggregate shape characteristics to pavement skid resistance was verified by relating skid resistance measurements from field test sections to measured aggregate properties from the laboratory. This methodology is expected to be the basis for further study to form a more comprehensive and verified model for the prediction of pavement skid resistance that incorporates measured aggregate properties from the AIMS system.