Microstructural modeling of asphalt concrete using a coupled moisture-mechanical constitutive relationship

Maryam Shakiba, Masoud K. Darabi, Rashid K. Abu Al-Rub, Eyad A. Masad, Dallas N. Little

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

36 Scopus citations


The coupled effect of moisture diffusion and mechanical loading on the microstructure of asphalt concrete is studied. The traditional Continuum Damage Mechanics (CDM) framework is modified to model detrimental effects of moisture and mechanical loading. Adhesive/cohesive moisture-induced damage constitutive relationships are proposed to describe the time-dependent degradation of material properties due to moisture. X-ray two-dimensional (2D) computed tomography-imaging technique is used to construct finite element (FE) microstructural representation of a typical dense-graded asphalt concrete. After being calibrated against pull-off experiments, the proposed moisture-induced damage constitutive relationship, which is coupled to thermo-viscoelastic-viscoplastic-viscodamage mechanisms, is used to simulate the microstructure of asphalt concrete. Simulation results demonstrate that the generated 2D FE microstructural representation along with the coupled moisture-mechanical constitutive relationship can be effectively used to model the overall thermo-hygro-mechanical response of asphalt concrete.

Original languageBritish English
Pages (from-to)4260-4279
Number of pages20
JournalInternational Journal of Solids and Structures
Issue number25-26
StatePublished - 1 Dec 2014


  • Asphalt concrete
  • Constitutive modeling
  • Continuum damage mechanics
  • Microstructural modeling
  • Moisture-induced damage


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