Automated Pavement Condition Assessment Using Laser Crack Measurement System (LCMS) on Airfield Pavements in Ireland
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Pavement condition surveys which identify pavement distress types, severities and quantities and provide a condition index or rating are an essential part of any pavement management system and an invaluable tool in the evaluation of a pavement's performance. Traditionally, distress data has been collected manually on foot, where the pavement is examined by eye, and the distress data is measured by hand. For airfield pavements, this often involves significant disruption to or closure of runways which can be very inconvenient and costly. Further modifications in Ireland have led to the development of more rapid visual inspection methods using a driven windshield survey procedure and more recently, using forward view digital video. This paper describes a case study where automated data collection and processing using Laser Crack Measurement System (LCMS) technology was used to establish and graphically report the pavement condition on two major runways at Dublin and Cork Airports, Ireland. The runways at both airports were constructed with asphalt-surfaced pavements. The data collection for the study included manual walking surveys, visual surveys from forward view digital video, and the collection of intensity and range three-dimensional (3D) imagery using an LCMS mounted on a high speed vehicle. The type, severity and extent of the pavement distress data were identified from the manual survey, the digital video, and using automated extraction from the LCMS 3D imagery. The data were processed and evaluated using the Micro PAVER pavement management system and the condition reported using the US Army Corps of Engineers Pavement Condition Index (PCI). The imagery and distress data from the LCMS survey were graphically reported using colour-coded thematics in ArcGIS and Google Earth GIS formats, and the detailed distress data was also mapped in AutoCAD layers. The paper examines and compares the pavement condition results obtained from the manual, video and LCMS data collection methods, and outlines the findings in using LCMS technology to automatically identify, geo-locate and graphically report pavement condition and distress data for airfield pavements.