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Title: Empirical-Markovian approach for estimating the flexible pavement structural capacity: Caltrans method as a case study
Authors: Khaled A Abaza 
Keywords: Markovian processes;Pavements, Flexible - Design and construction;Pavements - Performance;Pavements - Maintenance and repair
Issue Date: Jun-2021
Publisher: Elsevier
Source: Abaza, K. A. (2021). “Empirical-Markovian approach for estimating the flexible pavement structural capacity: Caltrans method as a case study”. International Journal of Transportation Science and Technology, Vol. 10, No. 2, pp. 156-166, Elsevier.
Journal: International Journal of Transportation Science and Technology 
Abstract: An Empirical-Markovian approach is proposed to estimate the pavement structural capacity as a function of key stochastic and design parameters. The key stochastic parameters are the initial and terminal deterioration transition probabilities typically estimated from pavement distress records. These two transition probabilities have a major impact on the pavement performance trend predicted using Markovian processes. In addition, typical pavement design factors are included as related to traffic loadings, materials properties, and climate conditions. In particular, two distinct Empirical-Markovian models are developed to estimate the pavement structural capacity in terms of relative strength indicators such as the structural number (SN) and gravel equivalent (GE). The first model can estimate the structural capacity based on the initial transition probability and relevant design parameters, while the second one deploys the terminal transition probability along with other design parameters. The recommendation is to use the higher of the two structural capacity values estimated for a particular pavement project. The sample models presented based on the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) design method have resulted in good model fittings as demonstrated by the various deployed statistics and error analysis, thus indicating the usefulness of the proposed Empirical-Markovian approach in estimating the pavement structural capacity for rehabilitation and design purposes. The model exponents can be obtained from solving a linear system of equations using data from a small project sample or solving a multi-variable linear regression model when a large road sample is available. The latter case provided sample generalized models with statistics indicating their high significance.
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