Traffic Speed Deflection Devices (TSDDs) that measure surface deflection at traffic speeds are used by several highway agencies in the United States and other countries to provide data to help with management of the highway network. For example, these data can be used for assessment of pavement structural condition, selection of pavement treatments, and other purposes. In comparison with traditional pavement deflection measurement (e.g., falling weight deflectometers), TSDDs provide a means for acquiring extensive amounts of data in a short period of time. However, the data obtained from TSDD measurements are influenced by many factors such as pavement type, pavement structure, climatic conditions, and speed of operation. Recognizing that no widely accepted practices for verifying the measurements obtained by TSDDs is currently available, research is needed to identify the deflection measurements that are required for pavement structural assessment and other applications and develop a procedure for verifying TSDD measurements and also to develop a recommended standard practice for implementing this procedure.
The objective of this research is to develop a recommended standard practice for verification of the measurements obtained by TSDDs on highway pavements for consideration and adoption by AASHTO.
Accomplishment of the project objective will require at least the following tasks.
The NCHRP is seeking the insights of proposers on how best to achieve the research objectives. Proposers are expected to describe research plans that can realistically be accomplished within the constraints of available funds and contract time. Proposals must present the proposers' current thinking in sufficient detail to demonstrate their understanding of the issues and the soundness of their approach to meeting the research objective. Task descriptions are intended to provide a framework for conducting the research.
Task 1. Collect and review relevant domestic and foreign literature, research findings, and information relative to TSDDs’ measurements. This information may be obtained from published and unpublished reports, and contacts with public and private organizations involved in the collection of traffic speed deflection data.
Task 2. Based on the review performed in Task 1, identify the deflection measurement characteristics (data elements and parameters) that are required for pavement structural evaluation and other applications as well as those items that affect these characteristics for further consideration/investigation in Phase II.
Note: Proposals shall include the research team’s current thinking regarding the required deflection measurement characteristics, the criteria proposed for their evaluation and the identification of those requiring further investigation and verification, as well as the factors influencing these characteristics.
Task 3. Based on the evaluations performed in Task 2, prepare an updated, detailed work plan for Phase II, that includes an approach for developing a procedure for verifying the identified deflection measurement characteristics and developing a recommended standard practice for implementing the procedure. The proposed approach shall include field experiments of various TSDDs and cover a range of those items that affect the data obtained from TSDDs.
Note: Proposers must include in the proposal a plan that provides detail on the proposer’s current thinking regarding the work anticipated in Phase II for developing the procedure for verifying the deflection measurement characteristics and the recommended standard practice (e.g., TSDDs, operation speeds, pavement types, pavement structures, and climatic conditions that will be considered and details of the field experiments). The work proposed for Task 5 must be divided into subtasks, and proposers must describe in detail the work proposed in each subtask.
Task 4. Prepare an interim report that documents the research performed in Tasks 1 through 3. Following review of the interim report by the NCHRP, the research team will be required to make a presentation to the project panel. Work on Phase II of the project will not begin until the interim report is approved and the Phase II work plan is authorized by the NCHRP. The decision on proceeding with Phase II will be based on the contractor’s documented justification of the updated work plan.
Task 5. Execute the Phase II plan approved in Task 4, and develop the verification procedure.
Task 6. Prepare a recommended standard practice for verification of the deflection characteristics obtained from TSDD measurements, in AASHTO format.
Task 7. Prepare a final deliverable that documents the entire research effort. The recommended standard practice shall be prepared as stand-alone document.
Note: Following receipt of the draft final deliverables, the remaining 3 months shall be for NCHRP review and comment and for research agency preparation of the final deliverables.
A. Resumes of research team members must present relevant qualifications and be limited to no more than 2 pages for each member. The section on equipment and facilities (Item 8 in the proposal) shall describe relevant information and be limited to no more than 3 pages.
B. Proposals should include a task-by-task breakdown of labor hours for each staff member as shown in Figure 4 in the brochure, "Information and Instructions for Preparing Proposals" (http://onlinepubs.trb.org/onlinepubs/crp/docs/ProposalPrep.pdf). Proposals also should include a breakdown of all costs (e.g., wages, indirect costs, travel, materials, and total) for each task using Figures 5 and 6 in the brochure. Please note that TRB Cooperative Research Program subawards (selected proposers are considered subawards to the National Academy of Sciences, the parent organization of TRB) must comply with 2 CFR 200 – Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards. These requirements include a provision that proposers without a "federally" Negotiated Indirect Costs Rate Agreement (NICRA) shall be subject to a maximum allowable indirect rate of 10% of Modified Total Direct Costs. Modified Total Direct Costs include all salaries and wages, applicable fringe benefits, materials and supplies, services, travel, and up to the first $25,000 of each lower-tier subaward and subcontract. Modified Total Direct Costs exclude equipment, capital expenditures, charges for patient care, rental costs, tuition remission, scholarships and fellowships, participant support costs and the portion of each lower-tier subaward and subcontract in excess of $25,000.
C. The NCHRP is a practical, applied research program that produces implementable products addressing problems faced by transportation practitioners and managers. The benefits of NCHRP research are realized only when the results are implemented in state DOTs and other agencies. Implementation of the research product must be considered throughout the process, from problem statement development to research contract and beyond completion of the research. Item 4(c), "Anticipated Research Results," must include the following: (a) the "product" expected from the research, (b) the audience or "market" for this product, (c) a realistic assessment of impediments to successful implementation, and (d) the institutions and individuals who might take leadership in deploying the research product. The project panel will develop and maintain an implementation plan throughout the life of the project. The research team will be expected to provide input to an implementation team consisting of panel members, AASHTO committee members, the NCHRP Implementation Coordinator, and others in order to meet the goals of NCHRP Active Implementation: Moving Research into Practice, available at http://onlinepubs.trb.org/onlinepubs/nchrp/docs/NCHRP_ActiveImplementation.pdf.
D. Item 5 in the proposal, "Qualifications of the Research Team," must include a section labeled "Disclosure." Information relevant to the NCHRP's need to ensure objectivity and to be aware of possible sources of significant financial or organizational conflict of interest in conducting the research must be presented in this section of the proposal. For example, under certain conditions, ownership of the proposing agency, other organizational relationships, or proprietary rights and interests could be perceived as jeopardizing an objective approach to the research effort, and proposers are asked to disclose any such circumstances and to explain how they will be accounted for in this study. If there are no issues related to objectivity, this should be stated.
E. Proposals are evaluated by the NCHRP staff and project panels consisting of individuals collectively very knowledgeable in the problem area. Selection of an agency is made by the project panel considering the following factors: (1) the proposer's demonstrated understanding of the problem; (2) the merit of the proposed research approach and experiment design; (3) the experience, qualifications, and objectivity of the research team in the same or closely related problem area; (4) the plan for ensuring application of results; (5) how the proposer approaches inclusion and diversity in the composition of their team and research approach, including participation by certified Disadvantaged Business Enterprises; and, if relevant, (6) the adequacy of the facilities.
Note: The proposer's approach to inclusion and diversity as well as participation by Disadvantaged Business Enterprises should be incorporated in Item 12 of the proposal.
F. Copyrights - All data, written materials, computer software, graphic and photographic images, and other information prepared under the contract and the copyrights therein shall be owned by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. The contractor and subcontractors will be able to publish this material for non-commercial purposes, for internal use, or to further academic research or studies with permission from TRB Cooperative Research Programs. The contractor and subcontractors will not be allowed to sell the project material without prior approval by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. By signing a contract with the National Academy of Sciences, contractors accept legal responsibility for any copyright infringement that may exist in work done for TRB. Contractors are therefore responsible for obtaining all necessary permissions for use of copyrighted material in TRB's Cooperative Research Programs publications. For guidance on TRB's policies on using copyrighted material please consult Section 5.4, "Use of Copyrighted Material," in the Procedural Manual for Contractors.