Minnesota Department of Transportation

511 Travel Info

Road Research

Research Topics

Orange barrels on a highway

Pavement Surface Characteristics

Road users expect pavements to be smooth, quiet, and safe. To encourage smooth pavements, we need to quantify the effects of other important pavement performance parameters on ride.  These parameters include texture, noise, and friction.

Quiet Pavements Seminar

On May 7, 2009, TERRA, the U of M and MnDOT hosted a seminar on the latest innovations in reducing the noise from tire-pavement interaction. Local and international experts from Denmark and Sweden presented the latest research about quiet pavements. View the webcast.

Minnesota Research and Implementation Projects

PCC Surface Characteristics – Rehabilitation TPF-5(134) - This pooled fund project is evaluating the performance of four sections at MnROAD: a transversely tined surface, a conventional grinding, and two variations of New Generation Concrete Surface (NGCS) developed at Purdue University.

PCC Surface Characteristics for New Construction  MPR-6(021) - Research findings will enable MnDOT to specify friction, ride, and texture range of values that will optimize quietness, ride, texture and friction in program delivery.  It will reduce the incidence of uncomfortable ride, hydroplaning, and obnoxious whines.

HMA Surface Characteristics related to Ride, Texture, Friction, Noise, Durability MPR-6(029) -More and more attention has been paid recently to hot mix asphalt pavement surface characteristics. In addition to structural capacity and durability, it is now desirable to design pavements to meet noise, texture, friction, and ride requirements. This pooled fund project will evaluate several asphalt test cells as MnROAD over a 5 year period for surface performance.

Innovative Diamond Grinding on MnROAD Cells 7, 8, 9, and 37 -This report describes the innovative grinding conducted on cells 7, 8, 9, and 37 at the MnROAD research facility of the Minnesota Department of Transportation, and the initial measurement of surface characteristics. The three types of diamond grinding studied include a conventional method (1/8" x 1/8" x 0.120 groove kerf configuration), the "innovative grind" (flush grind and groove) and the "ultimate grind" (flush grind and groove, with wider spacing between grooves than the innovative grind). The report describes the construction efforts followed by the initial testing, and the plans for long-term observation, monitoring, and surface characteristics testing.

Other References
  • TPF 962:  Pavement Surface Properties Consortium: A Research Program (Virginia)
  • NCHRP 1-44:  Measuring Tire-Pavement Noise at the Source
    (Illingworth & Rodkin, Inc.)
  • NCHRP 1-43:  Guide for Pavement Friction (ERES)
  • TPF 956:  PCC Surface Characteristics: Tire -Pavement Noise Program Part 3 - Innovative Solutions /Current Practices (Iowa State)
  • NCHRP 10-67:  Texturing of Concrete Pavements (ERES)
  • Fundamentals of Tire/Road Interaction Noise (Purdue University)
Surface Characteristics Resources

For additional information on the research results or for the full report, please contact:
Bernard Izevbekhai at 651-779-5608.