Masters Thesis Finished

July 31, 2009 · Posted in Engineering, School · 2 Comments 

I’m all finished with my master’s thesis. All that is left is make 4 copies on expensive paper, and take them to the ASU bookstore and spend too much to get them bound.  Of course Murphy has had a hand in my life the last couple days, our nice color duplex laser printer needs a new drum and transfer belt.  $300 is too much to pay right now, and I need them today, not in a couple weeks or whenever UPS delivers them, so we have to buy a new printer, which will be cheaper than printing it at Kinko’s.

You can download my thesis following this link:

My abstract:

Using a pavement design model presented by Hong et. al. the pavement structural number was computed in a 0.1 degree grid pattern for the entire state of Arizona. This model takes into account the expansion potential and suction envelope within the subgrade soil using a model nearly identical to that used in post-tensioned slab design. The pavement structural number for each of the points on the grid was also obtained using the pavement design model currently endorsed by the Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT). It was determined by comparing these two models that the method proposed by Hong et al., referred to as the “Texas method,” determines the structural number to be larger than that obtained using the ADOT model. In locations with soils with high expansion potential, the structural number estimated by the Texas Method was three to four times the structural number provided by the Arizona Method. Pavement performance data is needed to determine which method provides a more accurate design.

In order to properly model the Texas method, data was collected from various sources and analyzed. Climatic information was collected and maps generated. Soil property maps were also generated. Sensitivity analyses were performed on the mean principal stress compression index and on the wetting and drying cycle frequency. The latter parameter was analyzed for wetting and drying cycle frequencies of one day, one week, one month, and one year. It was found that the frequency contributed greatly to the depth of suction equilibrium and had a large effect on the structural number estimated by the Texas method.