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Inertial Profiler Certification for Evaluation of International Roughness Index A Synthesis of Highway Practice Rohan W. Perera SME Plymouth, MI 2018 Research sponsored by the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials in cooperation with the Federal Highway Administration Subscriber Categories Construction â¢ Highways â¢ Pavements N A T I O N A L C O O P E R A T I V E H I G H W A Y R E S E A R C H P R O G R A M NCHRP SYNTHESIS 526
Published reports of the NATIONAL COOPERATIVE HIGHWAY RESEARCH PROGRAM are available from Transportation Research Board Business Office 500 Fifth Street, NW Washington, DC 20001 and can be ordered through the Internet by going to http://www.national-academies.org and then searching for TRB Printed in the United States of America NCHRP SYNTHESIS 526 Project 20-05, Topic 48-12 ISSN 0547-5570 ISBN 978-0-309-39041-5 Library of Congress Control Number 2018946280 Â© 2018 National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved. COPYRIGHT INFORMATION Authors herein are responsible for the authenticity of their materials and for obtaining written permissions from publishers or persons who own the copyright to any previously published or copyrighted material used herein. Cooperative Research Programs (CRP) grants permission to reproduce material in this publication for classroom and not-for-profit purposes. Permission is given with the understanding that none of the material will be used to imply TRB, AASHTO, FAA, FHWA, FMCSA, FRA, FTA, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Research and Technology, PHMSA, or TDC endorsement of a particular product, method, or practice. It is expected that those reproducing the material in this document for educational and not-for-profit uses will give appropriate acknowledgment of the source of any reprinted or reproduced material. For other uses of the material, request permission from CRP. NOTICE The report was reviewed by the technical panel and accepted for publication according to procedures established and overseen by the Transportation Research Board and approved by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. The opinions and conclusions expressed or implied in this report are those of the researchers who performed the research and are not necessarily those of the Transportation Research Board; the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine; or the program sponsors. The Transportation Research Board; the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine; and the sponsors of the National Cooperative Highway Research Program do not endorse products or manufacturers. Trade or manufacturersâ names appear herein solely because they are considered essential to the object of the report. NATIONAL COOPERATIVE HIGHWAY RESEARCH PROGRAM Systematic, well-designed research is the most effective way to solve many problems facing highway administrators and engineers. Often, highway problems are of local interest and can best be studied by highway departments individually or in cooperation with their state universities and others. However, the accelerating growth of highway transportation results in increasingly complex problems of wide inter- est to highway authorities. These problems are best studied through a coordinated program of cooperative research. Recognizing this need, the leadership of the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) in 1962 ini- tiated an objective national highway research program using modern scientific techniquesâthe National Cooperative Highway Research Program (NCHRP). NCHRP is supported on a continuing basis by funds from participating member states of AASHTO and receives the full cooperation and support of the Federal Highway Administration, United States Department of Transportation. The Transportation Research Board (TRB) of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine was requested by AASHTO to administer the research program because of TRBâs recognized objectivity and understanding of modern research practices. TRB is uniquely suited for this purpose for many reasons: TRB maintains an extensive com- mittee structure from which authorities on any highway transportation subject may be drawn; TRB possesses avenues of communications and cooperation with federal, state, and local governmental agencies, univer- sities, and industry; TRBâs relationship to the National Academies is an insurance of objectivity; and TRB maintains a full-time staff of special- ists in highway transportation matters to bring the findings of research directly to those in a position to use them. The program is developed on the basis of research needs identified by chief administrators and other staff of the highway and transportation departments, by committees of AASHTO, and by the Federal Highway Administration. Topics of the highest merit are selected by the AASHTO Special Committee on Research and Innovation (R&I), and each year R&Iâs recommendations are proposed to the AASHTO Board of Direc- tors and the National Academies. Research projects to address these topics are defined by NCHRP, and qualified research agencies are selected from submitted proposals. Administration and surveillance of research contracts are the responsibilities of the National Academies and TRB. The needs for highway research are many, and NCHRP can make significant contributions to solving highway transportation problems of mutual concern to many responsible groups. The program, however, is intended to complement, rather than to substitute for or duplicate, other highway research programs.
The National Academy of Sciences was established in 1863 by an Act of Congress, signed by President Lincoln, as a private, non- governmental institution to advise the nation on issues related to science and technology. Members are elected by their peers for outstanding contributions to research. Dr. Marcia McNutt is president. The National Academy of Engineering was established in 1964 under the charter of the National Academy of Sciences to bring the practices of engineering to advising the nation. Members are elected by their peers for extraordinary contributions to engineering. Dr. C. D. Mote, Jr., is president. The National Academy of Medicine (formerly the Institute of Medicine) was established in 1970 under the charter of the National Academy of Sciences to advise the nation on medical and health issues. Members are elected by their peers for distinguished contributions to medicine and health. Dr. Victor J. Dzau is president. The three Academies work together as the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine to provide independent, objective analysis and advice to the nation and conduct other activities to solve complex problems and inform public policy decisions. The National Academies also encourage education and research, recognize outstanding contributions to knowledge, and increase public understanding in matters of science, engineering, and medicine. Learn more about the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine at www.national-academies.org. The Transportation Research Board is one of seven major programs of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. The mission of the Transportation Research Board is to increase the benefits that transportation contributes to society by providing leadership in transportation innovation and progress through research and information exchange, conducted within a setting that is objective, interdisciplinary, and multimodal. The Boardâs varied committees, task forces, and panels annually engage about 7,000 engineers, scientists, and other transportation researchers and practitioners from the public and private sectors and academia, all of whom contribute their expertise in the public interest. The program is supported by state transportation departments, federal agencies including the component administrations of the U.S. Department of Transportation, and other organizations and individuals interested in the development of transportation. Learn more about the Transportation Research Board at www.TRB.org.
C O O P E R A T I V E R E S E A R C H P R O G R A M S CRP STAFF FOR NCHRP SYNTHESIS 526 Christopher J. Hedges, Director, Cooperative Research Programs Lori L. Sundstrom, Deputy Director, Cooperative Research Programs Tanya Zwahlen, Consulting Project Manager Cheryl Keith, Senior Program Assistant Eileen P. Delaney, Director of Publications Natalie Barnes, Associate Director of Publications NCHRP PROJECT 20-05 PANEL Brian A. Blanchard, Florida DOT, Tallahassee, FL (Chair) Stuart D. Anderson, Texas A&M University, College Station, TX Socorro Briseno, California DOT, Sacramento, CA David M. Jared, Georgia DOT, Forest Park, GA Cynthia L. Jones, Ohio DOT, Columbus, OH Malcolm T. Kerley, NXL, Richmond, VA John M. Mason, Jr., Auburn University, Auburn, AL Roger C. Olson, Minnesota DOT, Bloomington, MN (retired) Benjamin T. Orsbon, South Dakota DOT, Pierre, SD Randall R. Park, Utah DOT, Salt Lake City, UT Robert L. Sack, New York State DOT, Albany, NY Francine Shaw Whitson, FHWA, Washington, DC Joyce N. Taylor, Maine DOT, Augusta, ME Jack Jernigan, FHWA Liaison Stephen F. Maher, TRB Liaison TOPIC 48-12 PANEL Srikanth Balasubramanian, California DOT, Sacramento, CA James Howard Greene, Florida DOT, Gainesville, FL Narinder Kohli, New Jersey DOT, Ewing, NJ Hosin Lee, University of Iowa Public Policy Center, Iowa City, IA Magdy Y. Mikhail, Texas DOT, Austin, TX Brian L. Schleppi, Ohio DOT, Columbus, OH Amy L. Simpson, AMEC Foster Wheeler Environment & Infrastructure, Inc., Roanoke, TX Robert Orthmeyer, FHWA Liaison Larry Wiser, FHWA Liaison James W. Bryant, Jr., TRB Liaison
FOREWORD Highway administrators, engineers, and researchers often face problems for which information already exists, either in documented form or as undocumented experience and practice. This infor- mation may be fragmented, scattered, and unevaluated. As a consequence, full knowledge of what has been learned about a problem may not be brought to bear on its solution. Costly research findings may go unused, valuable experience may be overlooked, and due consideration may not be given to recommended practices for solving or alleviating the problem. There is information on nearly every subject of concern to highway administrators and engineers. Much of it derives from research or from the work of practitioners faced with problems in their day- to-day work. To provide a systematic means for assembling and evalu ating such useful information and to make it available to the entire highway community, the American Association of State High- way and Transportation Officialsâthrough the mechanism of the National Cooperative Highway Research Programâauthorized the Transportation Research Board to undertake a continuing study. This study, NCHRP Project 20-05, âSynthesis of Information Related to Highway Problems,â searches out and synthesizes useful knowledge from all available sources and prepares concise, documented reports on specific topics. Reports from this endeavor constitute an NCHRP report series, Synthesis of Highway Practice. This synthesis series reports on current knowledge and practice, in a compact format, without the detailed directions usually found in handbooks or design manuals. Each report in the series provides a compendium of the best knowledge available on those measures found to be the most successful in resolving specific problems. PREFACE By Tanya Zwahlen Staff Officer Transportation Research Board The objective of NCHRP Synthesis Report 526 is to determine the state of practice of certification of inertial profilers at the national and international levels. Inertial profilers are used to collect the repeatable and reproducible road profiles analyzed to calculate a smoothness or ride quality index, the most common of whichâthe International Roughness Index (IRI)âis a performance measure that state departments of transportation (DOTs) must report to the Federal Highway Adminis- tration (FHWA) as part of Highway Performance Monitoring System/Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century (HPMS/MAP-21) Act and Fixing Americaâs Surface Transportation (FAST) Act requirements. The information in this report can help ensure that accurate data are collected both for smoothness specifications at the project level and for MAP-21 Act and FAST Act require- ments that the states provide accurate and consistent IRI data. The information contained in this synthesis was obtained using three sources. First, a literature review on the state of practice of certification of inertial profilersâincluding international sourcesâ was conducted. Second, a survey was distributed to all state DOTs and equipment vendors. Finally, follow-up interviews were conducted with selected states that have established and fully operational programs. Rohan W. Perera of SME collected and synthesized the information and wrote the report. The members of the topic panel are acknowledged on the preceding page. This synthesis is an immediately useful document that records the practices that were acceptable within the limita- tions of the knowledge available at the time of its preparation.
1 Summary 6 Chapter 1 Introduction 6 Background 8 Scope of the Study 8 Study Approach 9 Terminology 10 Organization of the Synthesis 12 Chapter 2 Background Information on Inertial Profilers and Profile Data Collection 12 Inertial Profilers 14 Height Sensors Used in Profilers 16 International Roughness Index (IRI) 18 Effect of Surface Texture on Data Collected by Laser Height Sensors 18 Dense-Graded Asphalt Concrete 19 Stone Matrix Asphalt 20 Open-Graded Friction Course 21 Chip Seal 22 Transversely Tined PCC 23 Longitudinally Tined PCC 23 Diamond-Ground Concrete 24 Longitudinally Ground and Grooved Concrete 25 Implications of Sensor Type on Network-Level Data and Smoothness Acceptance Testing 25 Reference Profilers 28 Certification of Inertial Profilers 28 Standards for Certifying Profilers 32 State-Specific Procedures for Certifying Profilers 33 Differences Between Certification Methods Based on Cross-Correlation and Overall IRI 34 Methods Used in Australia 37 Method Used in the United Kingdom 38 Method Used in Ontario, Canada 38 Network-Level Data Collection 39 Operational Procedures for Collecting Profile Data 40 Pre-Operational Checks 40 Procedures to Follow During Data Collection 42 Locations for Profiler Certification 43 Texas A&M Transportation Institute (TTI) Certification Program 43 National Center for Asphalt Technology (NCAT) Certification Program C O N T E N T S
43 Resources Related to Pavement Smoothness 44 The Little Book of Profiling 44 ProVAL Software 44 National Highway Institute (NHI) Course 45 Chapter 3 Profiling Equipment Owned by State Highway Agencies 45 Inertial Profilers Owned by State Highway Agencies 47 Purposes for Which Inertial Profilers are Used 48 Reference Profilers Owned by State Highway Agencies 49 Chapter 4 Use of IRI for Construction Acceptance 49 Smoothness Specification 49 Use of IRI for Construction Acceptance 51 Policy on Specifying IRI for Smoothness 53 Chapter 5 Collection of Inertial Profile for IRI Construction Acceptance 53 Responsibility for Data Collection 53 Types of Profilers Used to Collect Data 53 Use of Certified Equipment for Data Collection 54 Contractors Collecting Data for Construction Acceptance 55 Certification of Inertial Profilers 55 Frequency of Certification 55 Location and Agency Performing Profiler Certification 56 Surface and Texture Types Used for Certification 56 Length of Section Used for Profiler Certification 57 Device Used to Collect Reference Data for Certification 57 Procedures Used to Certify Profilers 59 Written Procedures for Certification of Profilers 59 Fee for Certifying Contractor-Owned Profilers 59 Documentation Provided After Certifying Contractor-Owned Profilers 60 Approval of Contractor-Owned Profilers 60 Verification Procedures Used for State DOTâOwned Profilers 61 Certification of Inertial Profiler Operators 61 State DOTs Requiring Profiler Operator Certification 62 Written Procedures for Operator Certification 62 Procedures Used to Certify Profiler Operators 63 Period of Validity for Operator Certification 64 Documentation Provided to Certified Operators 65 Fee for Certifying Operators 65 Reciprocity of Certification for Inertial Profilers and Operators 65 Inertial Profilers 66 Profiler Operators 66 Sensor Types Specified for Data Collection 67 Operational Procedures for Collecting Data 67 Pre-Operational Checks Performed on State DOTâOwned Profilers 68 Pre-Operational Checks Performed on Contractor-Owned Profilers 68 Quality Assurance Procedures on Contractor-Collected Data and on Disputes 68 Quality Assurance Procedures 69 Disputes with Contractors
Note: Photographs, figures, and tables in this report may have been converted from color to grayscale for printing. The electronic version of the report (posted on the web at www.trb.org) retains the color versions. 70 Challenges and Important Items to Consider When Setting Up a Profiler Certification Program 70 Challenges When Setting Up a Profiler Certification Program 71 Important Items to Consider When Setting Up a Profiler Certification Program 73 Chapter 6 Collection of Inertial Profile for Network-Level IRI 73 Responsibility for Data Collection 74 Certification of Inertial Profilers 74 Certification of State DOTâOwned Equipment 75 Certification of Vendor-Owned Equipment 75 Frequency of Certification 75 Surface Texture Types Used for Certification 76 Length of Section and Device for Reference Data Collection 76 Procedure Used to Certify Profilers 77 Fee for Certifying Vendor-Owned Profilers 77 Documentation Provided After Certifying Vendor-Owned Inertial Profilers 77 Verification of Profilers 78 State DOTâOwned Equipment 78 Vendor-Owned Equipment 79 Certification of Inertial Profiler Operators 80 Sensor Types Specified for Data Collection 80 Operational Procedures for Collecting Data 81 Data Collection by State DOT 81 Data Collection by Vendor 82 Data Quality Management 83 Vendor Perspective on Profile Data Collection 86 Chapter 7 Conclusions and Further Research 86 Summary of Findings: IRI for Construction Acceptance 88 Summary of Findings: Network-Level IRI 89 Summary of Overall Findings 90 Barriers to Implementing a Profiler Certification Program 91 Gaps in Knowledge and Suggestions for Future Research 92 References 95 Abbreviations and Acronyms 96 Appendices AâD