Research Pays Off: Preserving Georgia Pavements with Micromilling

Georgia’s experience shows that pervious friction course (PFC) placed on pavement surfaces can improve tire friction and surface drainage and provide good pavement performance for 10 to 12 years. When a PFC approaches the end of its service life, the underlying layer of dense-graded hot-mix asphalt or stone matrix asphalt is generally still in good condition and could last for several more years.

Despite the effectiveness of using the PFC procedure, the Georgia Department of Transportation sought a more economical pavement maintenance procedure. Georgia DOT initiated a research project to investigate micro-milling for the removal of deteriorated open-graded friction course to maintain asphalt pavements on interstate highways. It conducted research studies on Interstates-75 and -95 to explore the use of micro-milling and retrofitting a laser road profiler (LRP) with software to estimate surface texture parameters.

The research produced several findings that would benefit Georgia DOT and other highway agencies, including the following:

  • Micro-milling in conjunction with thin asphalt overlays is an effective pavement preservation treatment.
  • Variable-depth micro-milling provides the required surface texture without sacrificing milled surface texture and smoothness.
  • The LRP can measure both surface texture and smoothness on micro-milled surfaces and can serve as a tool for quality acceptance and performance measurement.

In addition, Georgia DOT has accrued cost savings from this preservation treatment. Replacing conventional milling with micro-milling on the two interstate projects saved an estimated $11 million—nearly 50 times the expenditures for the research. After 4 to 7 years in service, both projects have shown good performance.

Read about Georgia’s experience

This entry was posted in New Technology, News, Pavement Design/Const., Pavement Pres. Apps., Treatments. Bookmark the permalink.

Comments are closed.