Analytical Study of Effects of Truck Tire Pressure on Pavements with Measured Tire-Pavement Contact Stress Data

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date


Subject Area

infrastructure - vehicle, planning - methods, mode - rail


Wheel rail interaction, Vertical strain, Variance analysis, Trucks, Tire pressure, Tire pavement interface, Tensile strains, Stresses, Stress (Mechanics), Statistical methods, Statistical analysis, Rolling contact, Road freight vehicles, Pavement layers, Mathematical statistics, Lorries, Heavy goods vehicles, Elastic layer analysis, Contact stress, Cargo vehicles, Asphaltic concrete pavements, Asphalt concrete pavements, Analysis of variance


Truck tire inflation pressure plays an important role in the tire�pavement interaction process. As a conventional approximation method in many pavement studies, tire�pavement contact stress is frequently assumed to be uniformly distributed over a circular contact area and to be simply equal to the tire pressure. However, recent studies have demonstrated that the tire�pavement contact stress is far from uniformly distributed. Measured tire�pavement contact stress data were input into an elastic multilayer pavement analysis program to compute pavement immediate responses. Two asphalt concrete pavement structures, a thick pavement and a thin pavement, were investigated. Major pavement responses at locations in the pavement structures were computed with the measured tire�pavement contact stress data and were compared with the conventional method. The computation results showed that the conventional method tends to underestimate pavement responses at low tire pressures and to overestimate pavement responses at high tire pressures. A two-way analysis of variance model was used to compare the pavement responses to identify the effects of truck tire pressure on immediate pavement responses. Statistical analysis found that tire pressure was significantly related to tensile strains at the bottom of the asphalt concrete layer and stresses near the pavement surface for both the thick and thin pavement structures. However, tire pressure effects on vertical strain at the top of the subgrade were minor, especially in the thick pavement.