Micromechanical finite element framework for predicting viscoelastic properties of asphalt mixtures

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A micromechanical finite element (FE) framework was developed to predict the viscoelastic properties (complex modulus and creep stiffness) of the asphalt mixtures. The two-dimensional (2D) microstructure of an asphalt mixture was obtained from the scanned image. In the mixture microstructure, irregular aggregates and sand mastic were divided into different subdomains. The FE mesh was generated within each aggregate and mastic subdomain. The aggregate and mastic elements share nodes on the aggregate boundaries for deformation connectivity. Then the viscoelastic mastic with specified properties was incorporated with elastic aggregates to predict the viscoelastic properties of asphalt mixtures. The viscoelastic sand mastic and elastic aggregate properties were inputted into micromechanical FE models. The FE simulation was conducted on a computational sample to predict complex (dynamic) modulus and creep stiffness. The complex modulus predictions have good correlations with laboratory uniaxial compression test under a range of loading frequencies. The creep stiffness prediction over a period of reduced time yields favorable comparison with specimen test data. These comparison results indicate that this micromechanical model is capable of predicting the viscoelastic mixture behavior based on ingredient properties. © 2007 RILEM.

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Materials and Structures/Materiaux et Constructions