Evaluation of optimum rubblized depth to prevent reflection cracks

Seung Woo Lee, Jae Min Bae, Seung Hwan Han, Shelley M. Stoffels

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Reflection cracking is a common distress in asphalt overlays on cracked concrete pavements. Rubblization, which can minimize reflection cracks, has been used as an efficient rehabilitation method for aged concrete pavements in the United States. When applying the rubblization method, it is typical for the upper layer of aged concrete pavement to be rubblized to 40-70 mm in size, while the lower layer of the aged concrete pavement remains at a larger size, often over 300 mm. For thick concrete slabs, it is difficult to rubblize the entire depth of thick concrete slabs in terms of both construction and cost. The high impact energy necessary to rubblize the entire depth may cause degradation of the structural capacity of the pavement substructure. Korean highways are typically paved with thick concrete pavement slabs (30-33 cm concrete slabs with 15 cm lean concrete bases on granular subbases). This study conducted in Korea determined the minimum depth of effective 40-70 mm size rubblization to deter a reflection crack. An indoor simulation experiment was designed to assess the effects of the depth of the 40-70 mm rubblized layer on the prevention of reflection cracks. The experiment simulated two modes of reflection crack initiation: Mode I (bending failure) and Mode II (shear failure). Modes I and II tests were carried out for rubblization depths of 0, 10, and 20 cm. Reflection cracking did not occur with the simulated rubblization depths of 10cm or 20 cm.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)355-361
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Transportation Engineering
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2007

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Transportation


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