Knowledge CentreTechnical Resources SearchConference PapersInnovative Materials for Road Insulation in Cold Climates: Foam Glass Aggregates.

Innovative Materials for Road Insulation in Cold Climates: Foam Glass Aggregates.


Freezing and thawing cycles cause road network damages associated to differential heaving and bearing capacity loss during spring. As a result, deterioration of the ride quality, cracking of the asphalt concrete layer and finally, increased rutting and pothole formation are likely to occur. This leads to increased maintenance and higher rehabilitation costs. In order to improve the durability of the pavement, thermal insulation is used more and more in the province of Quebec. This protection technique limits frost penetration in the frost susceptible subgrade soil, thus reducing the associated damage and the rehabilitation costs. In Quebec and in Canada, extruded polystyrene is the material commonly used for pavement insulation. New alternative materials are now available, including foam glass aggregates made from recycled glass of various origins. Foam glass aggregates can be considered as lightweight and suitable for insulating granular material. This study will expose the state of knowledge on thermal insulation with cellular glass. It will also describe the results obtained from the tests performed in the laboratory and from monitoring an experimental road site during its first year of use. The test site is composed of three different sections build on frost sensitive soil: the first section is insulated with foam glass aggregates, the second is insulated with extruded polystyrene panels and the third is a conventional pavement structure without insulation. The results from the experimental site will be used to compare the thermal behavior and the performance of the three sections. Special attention will be given to the first section to gather the effect of foam glass aggregates integration on pavement structure. The thermal and performance data collected
in-situ will be compared to those obtained in the laboratory. The result obtained from this new product will be used in the design methods for flexible pavements in cold regions.

Conference Paper Details

Session title:
Innovation in Geotechnical and Materials Engineering
Segui, P.
Doré, G.
Bilodeau, J.-P.
Morasse, S.