‘Thinlay’ Asphalt Overlays Next Word in Pavement Preservation

Pavement Preservation Journal, Spring 2015, Vol. 8, No. 1


As public works agencies and departments of transportation look to make the most efficient use of tight budgets, the National Asphalt Pavement Association is outlining the benefits of Thinlay thin asphalt mixes for pavement preservation.

Thinlays constitute a suite of thin asphalt overlay mixes designed to be placed at thickness as thin as 5/8 of an inch.

NAPA, working with state asphalt pavement associations and the National Center for Asphalt Technology, is testing several localized Thinlay mixes with a high level of recycled materials, which will be used to craft guidelines other states can use to develop sustainable thin overlays designed to best meet their local needs, conditions and materials.

Thinlays offer the highest value to public and private pavement owners alike, according to NAPA. They share many of the benefits seen in asphalt overlays and inlays: extended pavement life, smooth ride, a modest improvement in pavement strength, enhanced safety, and responsible use of natural resources through reuse and recycling.

Given the value of goods being transported over U.S. highways and roads, and the effect of road condition on costs, time and safety for the public, it is critical that our nation’s highways and roads be kept in proper condition. Many agencies apply pavement preservation techniques to cost effectively maintain or improve roads in a good condition.

Pavement preservation is defined in the current Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act (MAP-21) which was signed into law in July 2012, as “programs and activities employing a network level, long-term strategy that enhances pavement performance by using an integrated, cost-effective set of practices that extend pavement life, improve safety, and meet road user expectations.”

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