Asphalt Reinforcement Services Ltd have introduced ARCDESO® (Anti-Reflective Cracking Design Software) to engineers and contractors in the UK.
ARCDESO® is a pavement design software tool which uses finite element analysis to accurately predict cracking patterns in composite pavements. The software can be used for pavement designs incorporating asphalt reinforcement to offer cost-effective, sustainable maintenance solutions.
Currently a wide range of solutions exist for design engineers to treat reflective cracking including:
- plane out and in/overlay
- apply thick asphaltic overlays
- the use of modified asphalt reinforcement
- the use of GlasGrid® asphalt reinforcement
Combinations of these solutions are of course also possible.
During the design phase of a project, each solutions needs to be assessed in terms of cost and it’s life expectancy, before deciding on the most appropriate maintenance option and implementing it.
Given the nature of reflective cracking, complex analysis is required to simulate a crack propagating through an asphalt overlay. It would not be practical to carry out lengthy project testing on all of the possible maintenance combinations. ARCDESO® can analyse many maintenance options within a short period of time to provide a calculated life expectancy report.
How does ARCDESO® work?
The software takes the following factors into account when judging the effectiveness of reinforcement in the prevention of reflective cracking:
- reinforcement stiffness
- damage during installation
- anchorage length
- tack coat characteristics (spray rate and quality)
- climate conditions
ARCDESO® also includes a database of possible overlay mixtures, detailing their thermal and mechanical properties such as healing potential and stress relaxation.
The reflective cracking predictions made by ARCDESO® can be analysed and evaluated in different ways in order to establish the most suitable maintenance option. There has been extensive field data collated over many years which supports the results derived from the software.