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A Method to Detect Uniformity of Road Base Course Based on Impact Imaging Technology
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Source: Nature.com
The damage of road base course has the characteristics of strong concealment and difficulty in detecting. For this reason, the impact imaging method has been used for detection of road base course. This paper discussed systematically collection points setting, excitation mode and data processing method. Through the application in testing for highway pavement base before and after grouting maintenance, the results show that the method is simple and accurate. The detection results can be displayed in a two-dimensional image form and it is easy to be used in road maintenance. This method can be used to identify and locate the damages of the pavement base, to judge the uniformity of the pavement base structure. It can also be used to evaluate the effectiveness of internal damage after grouting repairing.

Cement stabilized bases with the outstanding advantage of using local materials, low cost, but high strength and good stability has been widely adopted in highways and municipal roads1,2. Nevertheless, with the continuous use of roads, particularly under heavy traffic loads, the cement-stabilized base course exhibits various shortcomings3,4.

These include susceptibility to cracking due to shrinkage, vulnerability to water damage, limited fatigue resistance, and sensitivity to overload, among others1,5. The damages to the base course of the road are located deep within, making them highly concealed and challenging to detect and differentiate through visual assessment at the initial stages. When the damages have become more deteriorative to be revealed, the pavement surface would be reflectively bottom-up destroyed already. The damages are so serious that they needs to be repaired in the excavation maintenance, which is more complicated with great expense of time and economic. Therefore, it is very important and significant to detect the damage of road bases accurately in the early stage6. It was a big challenge for traditional technologies.

Currently there are several non-destructive technologies to be used in detecting road base damage, like rebound method, ground penetrating radar, ultrasonic method and so on7,8,9. However, due to the complexity of road construction and environmental factors, the accuracy of these detection technologies may not meet expectations in practical projects. The rebound method is cost-effective and easy to use, but it has low accuracy and is greatly influenced by the road surface condition10. Ground-penetrating radar provides visual results in image form rather than data, heavily influenced by the subjectivity of researchers11. The ultrasonic detection method is a rapid and non-destructive testing technique with broad applications, but its ability to locate voids relies heavily on the operators' experience and knowledge12. A convenient and effective method that can assess the uniformity of the road base is essential for diagnosing disengagement, cavities, and leaks within the road.

Read the full article at Nature.com.

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