The National Academies

ACRP 09-18 [Active]

Rapid Airfield Concrete Pavement Slab Replacement and Patching Guidance

  Project Data
Funds: $400,000
Staff Responsibility: Marci A. Greenberger
Research Agency: NCE
Principal Investigator: Tom Van Dam
Effective Date: 4/17/2019
Completion Date: 10/16/2020

The cost and inconvenience of closing critical airfield pavement for repair can be significant. Airports want to minimize closures for repairs and rehabilitation projects and therefore are increasing the use of rapid airfield concrete pavement slab replacement and patching. This process involves both the use of alternative concrete mixes and streamlined construction techniques to reduce impacts to airport operations. While FAA Advisory Circular 150/5370-16, Rapid Construction of Rigid Airfield Pavements, offers general guidance on this topic, airports need specific guidance that reflects recent advancements in rapid airfield concrete pavement repair materials and procedures and that enables them to adapt these techniques to their unique operational situation.
The objective of this research is to develop a guidebook to help airport practitioners implement rapid airfield concrete pavement slab replacement and patching projects. The guidebook should build on the guidance provided in FAA Advisory Circular 150/5370-16, and: 
  • Identify situations where rapid airfield concrete pavement slab replacement and patch might be considered (e.g., non-emergency vs. emergency repairs);
  • Include methods (e.g., decision tree, flow chart) for evaluating the benefits and costs of rapid replacement (e.g., timing, safety, operational impacts) and characterizing long-term performance;
  • Discuss how rapid airfield concrete pavement slab replacement and patching differs from traditional methods with respect to project planning, procurement, design, construction, schedule, and return to service;
  • Offer specific guidance on key aspects, including (but not limited to):
    • Evaluating material properties and long-term durability;
    • Demolition, such as options for handling slurry, how far in advance slabs can be saw cut;
    • Recommendations for improvements to base material;
    • Handling slabs with in-pavement lights;
    • Post-construction issues, such as curing compound, permanent/temporary pavement markings, and grooving; and
  • Provide case study examples of where airports undertook rapid airfield concrete pavement slab replacement and patching projects, representing an array of project sizes, airport layouts, geography, climate, activity mix and levels, material availability/selection, and degrees of urgency.
 STATUS  Research is underway.

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