Road Surface Measurement and Multi-Scale Modeling of Rubber Road Contact and Adhesion
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A major challenge in tire, as well as in road engineering, is to understand the intricate mechanisms of friction. Pavement texture is a feature of the road surface that determines most tire-road interactions, and can be grouped into two classes: macro-texture, resulting mainly in the hysteretic component of friction, and micro-texture, resulting in adhesion. If both textures are maintained at high levels, they can help provide sufficient resistance to skidding. The ultimate objective of this research is to develop a physics-based multiscale rubber-road friction model that can predict the effectiveness of the tire as it interacts with the vehicle and the pavement. The model is developed based on sound physics and contact mechanics theories and uses road profile measurements and data measured on various tire compounds. To be able to predict road surface characteristics, it is proven that road surfaces are of fractal nature on given ranges of scale. It is shown that while global fractal quantities fail to classify pavement profiles, a local fractal parameter and three other texture parameters can separate road profiles that have different friction characteristics. Through the implementation of various contact theories and by conducting simulation studies, a methodical understanding of contact mechanics and of the effect of the diverse factors that influence friction is attained. To predict the viscoelastic friction between any given tire tread compound and road, the Nanovea JR25 portable optical profilometer is used to measure the road profiles. To characterize the road profile, the one-dimensional pavement measurements are used to obtain the two-dimensional power spectrum, followed by testing and characterizing the tread compounds (this is being carried out by Bridgestone). This data is used to develop a comprehensive analytical methodology to predict friction. To validate this model, a Dynamic Friction Test apparatus is designed and built. The friction tester enables measurement of the friction between tread compound samples and arbitrary surfaces, at different slip ratios. The correlations between the simulations and both indoor and outdoor experimental results are investigated.
- Doctoral Dissertations