The entire Italian road national network, is nowadays highly degraded. There is the urgent need of new design techniques that could be able to implement solutions for producing road pavement of at least 50 years lasting life.
Nowadays it is impossible to achieve these targets with the current level of technology available on the market.
The research project aimed to achieve objectives of a key relevance both for Italian and international policy makers and researchers.
In the national context, the main objective was to make the concept of perpetual road pavements usable in real practice. Within the project, the definition of road eternal pavements is enlarged to include the possibility to insert support systems in the pavements.
The research was divided in different phases assigned to the involved Research Units:
- Real size load simulators
- Structural networks contribution
- Interaction between reinforcement and asphalt layers
- Development of an expert decision support system for the implementation of perpetual pavements in ordinary road
A numerical calculation model based on the use of the technique of distinct elements was developed with the project and represents a real innovation in the road pavements sector.
Similarly, the development (within the laboratory) of a load simulator in real size, gave an important contribution to the international scientific community.
Specific studies were performed in order to investigate the interaction between support systems and bitumen layers and to optimize the use of networks to extend the lifecycle of the product.