Numerical investigation of response of widened pavement system

X. Liu, A. Scarpas, C. Van Gurp, Arjan Venmans

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Road widening can cause problems because the new shoulder will be much narrower than the existing one and truck traffic will travel close to the slope of the embankment. This design aspect can cause considerable deterioration in pavements consisting of granular base materials and thin asphalt surfacing. The outcome is often premature cracking and permanent deformation along the pavement edge. This paper presents the results of full three-dimensional (3-D) material and structural modeling and finite element analyses of road widening performed within the framework of the Delft Cluster program Predictable Subsoil for Infrastructure, in the Netherlands. Much attention has been paid to realistic modeling of the material behavior and performance and the 3-D interaction between various components of the structure. The finite element simulations show the development of strains and stresses inside The body of the pavement. The importance of the damage distribution in the asphalt concrete and the road foundation materials is demonstrated. The results of the analyses indicate the main issues with widening old roads on soft subgrades, so that the development of longitudinal or transverse cracks or both during the service life of the pavement can be avoided.

Original languageBritish English
Pages (from-to)3-12
Number of pages10
JournalTransportation Research Record
Issue number2227
StatePublished - 1 Dec 2011


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