Using Tire/Pavement Interface Noise Results to Define Statistically Similar Bituminous Pavements in Massachusetts
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In October 2010, the Center for Advanced Infrastructure and Transportation (CAIT) utilized the On-Board Sound Intensity Method in Massachusetts to evaluate seven Open-Graded Friction Courses (OGFC) and eight Asphalt Rubber Gap Graded (ARGG) pavements for MassDOT. Since major concerns regarding pavement selection in the northeast revolve around winter conditions and winter maintenance, if noise level similarities could be found between ARGG and OGFC pavements, pavement engineers would be able to specify more appropriate mixes to satisfy both noise concerns and maintenance concerns in their area. The authors conducted a statistical analysis using student’s t-test to compare overall noise levels on a matrix to determine which pavements were statistically similar, with a 95% confidence interval or greater. The purpose was to create a method to evaluate pavements side by side quickly to determine if there were any ARGGs that exhibited similar overall noise levels as the current OGFCs, not to complete a thorough noise evaluation. This type of analysis was sufficient to allow pavement engineers from MassDOT to alternatively choose ARGGs that could withstand intensive winter maintenance while retaining similar acoustic benefits observed in some of the OGFCs currently in place.