SCAPA Travels to Auburn University, Visits NCAT
Earlier this month, SCAPA Technical Director Jayson Jordan headed to Auburn University for the Asphalt Recycling and Reclaiming Association's semi-annual meeting. The meeting served as a forum to discuss development of specifications and research activities, as well as an opportunity to identify knowledge gaps. Former Auburn Tigers coach Pat Dye served as the keynote speaker and delivered some hilarious stories of his time as a coach and excellent words of wisdom to carry in everyday life. Topics on in-place recycling, full depth reclamation, and cold milling were all presented over the 3 days, and had speakers represented from Canada to Alabama.
The 2nd day of the conference included a tour of the facilities at the National Center for Asphalt Technology (NCAT), the Lee Road 159 Experiment, as well as the NCAT Test Track.
The NCAT laboratory had sections dedicated to binder testing, aggregates, sample preparation, and performance testing. It was great to see SCAPA and SCDOT represented with other NAPA and APA Perpetual Pavement award winners throughout the hallways. During the Lee Road 159 experiment, participants were able to see the effects of different combinations of preservation treatments, and how they make a difference compared to leaving the road untreated. Thin overlays continue to perform well, and there's very little cracking on most of those sections. The overwhelming trend seems to be that treatments that seal water out tend to outperform those that do not.
After a drive-by of the high volume preservation experiment on US 280, the tour concluded at the NCAT Test Track. The track has been a great tool for agencies to experiment with different mixtures and combinations and simulate many years of service within just a 2-3 year period. The staff at NCAT displayed their falling weight deflectometer, which helps estimate a pavement's structural capacity. Virginia DOT has sections on the track using combinations of reclamation and in-place recycling which have performed very well. The next Test Track Conference will be held in March 2018 in Auburn, Alabama.