Friction, Texture, Profile Equipment Loan Program
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In September 2010, the Federal Highway Administration awarded APTech and its teaming partner, the Pennsylvania Transportation Institute, a Task Order contract to administer the agency’s Friction, Texture, and Profile Measurement Equipment Loan Program. The Task Order, which is funded through the FHWA’s Pavement Surface Characteristics program, provides state highway agencies and closely affiliated research institutions with the opportunity to request and take loan of a Circular Texture Meter (CT Meter) and/or Dynamic Friction Tester (DF Tester) in order to become acquainted with these devices and/or use them as part of a pavement friction/texture testing study. The loan program also includes the opportunity to receive remote and/or on-site technical assistance, including calibration and demonstration of the devices and assistance in using them in the field. The loan period for the friction and texture devices may vary from a few weeks to several months (3 to 6 months is typical), depending on the specific nature of an agency’s request.
The APTech team will administer the program through at least September 2013. For additional information about the program, please contact Mr. Kelly Smith.
Pavement friction plays a critical role in the ability of a vehicle to maneuver and stop on roadways, especially in wet weather conditions. Characterizing pavement friction has always posed a challenge to highway agencies determined to improve safety through increased skid resistance.
The Circular Texture Meter (CT Meter) and Dynamic Friction Tester (DF Tester) present portable solutions to measuring pavement friction. The CT Meter uses a Laser Displacement Sensor to measure the macrotexture of a pavement surface at a given location. Macrotexture is the gritty texture that penetrates thin films of water and provides escape channels for water, thereby increasing the grip for a vehicle's tires and improving stopping ability during wet weather.
The DF Tester measures the dynamic coefficient of friction on the same circular track of pavement measured by the CT Meter. It provides a surrogate measure of the pavement microtexture, which is the micro-scale roughness exhibited by aggregate particles in the pavement surface layer material. The International Friction Index (IFI), which is becoming the new standard for characterizing pavement friction, can be computed using the CT Meter output in combination with the DF Tester output.
Both the CT Meter and DF Tester are portable and testing can be fully supported in a van, pick-up truck, sport utility vehicle, or similar. Power is supplied to the equipment directly from the vehicle's battery.
Under its Pavement Surface Characteristics (PSC) program, the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) has developed an equipment loan program that allows highway agencies and other related organizations to utilize the CT Meter and DF Tester in a test and evaluation capacity. Once approved by the FHWA, all required equipment (except for the testing vehicle) are provided to the requesting agency for an agreed-upon loan period. Onsite training and on-call technical support related to the equipment can also be provided during the loan period.
To request a piece of equipment, please complete the online request form, or email your contact information to Equipment Requests. Upon receipt of a request, the availability of the equipment will be confirmed, and we will contact you to schedule delivery.