# Three-dimensional simulation of aggregate and asphalt mixture using parameterized shape and size gradation

## Abstract

Aggregate occupies at least three-quarters of the volume of asphalt mixture and can significantly affect the performance of pavement. The geometrical morphology influences the slippage and interlock among aggregates for resisting and distributing applied loads. In recent years, the discrete-element method (DEM) has been employed for simulation of asphalt mixture structure. This paper introduces an approach for simulation of aggregate and asphalt mixtures using parameterized shape and size gradation. Both the plane geometry factor (PGF) and the section aspect ratio (SAR) were employed to describe the three-dimensional (3D) geometric characteristics of aggregates. A numerical technique of aggregate models was implemented with probabilistic parameters depending on statistical results of PGFs and SARs. The 3D numerical model of asphalt mixtures was assembled with three different components, and was validated by uniaxial compression tests via comparison with the laboratory result. It was found that the PGF and SAR are appropriate to describe the three-dimensional features of aggregate shapes, because a simplified space object can be described by a two-dimensional (2D) graphical projection and a vector scalar corresponding to the space vector. Probability distribution curves of PGFs and SARs between coarse aggregates were in concordance with the Gauss-type function, because their correlation coefficients were all greater than 95%. It was verified that the developed clumping algorithm of aggregates was reasonable in terms of the shape and size gradation. Based on the parallel-bond model and Burger's model, the results of virtual tests were in good agreement with those of laboratory uniaxial tests. The angularity (PGF) of aggregates has a beneficial effect on the strength and stability of asphalt mixtures, whereas the flat-elongated feature (SAR) has a negative effect on the strength and stability of asphalt mixtures.

Publication DOI: https://doi.org/10.1061/(ASCE)MT.1943-5533.0002623 College of Engineering & Physical SciencesCollege of Engineering & Physical Sciences > Aston Logistics and Systems InstituteCollege of Engineering & Physical Sciences > Aston Institute of Materials Research (AIMR) © 2019, American Society of Civil Engineers Asphalt mixtures,Discrete-element method,Irregular aggregates,Parameterized shape,Three-dimensional simulation,Civil and Structural Engineering,Building and Construction,Materials Science(all),Mechanics of Materials 1943-5533 29 Apr 2024 07:28 21 Jan 2019 09:55 http://www.scop ... tnerID=8YFLogxK (Scopus URL) https://ascelib ... 43-5533.0002623 (Publisher URL) Article 2019-03-01 2019-01-07 2018-08-29 Li, Jue Zhang, Junhui Qian, Guoping Zheng, Jianlong Zhang, Yuqing ( 0000-0001-5825-0131)