Graduation Year


Document Type




Degree Granting Department

Civil Engineering

Major Professor

Jian John Lu, Ph.D.


Repeatability, spectral analysis, Iri, Rn, Speed impact


Roughness is an important indicator of pavement riding comfort and safety. It is a condition indicator that should be carefully considered when evaluating primary pavements. At the same time, the use of roughness measurements plays a critical role in the pavement management system.There are many devices used for roughness evaluation. The major tools used for road roughness quantify are the road profilers. In the thesis research, in order to obtain useful pavement surface condition data for pavement evaluation, an inertial based pavement roughness measuring system was developed with the combination of modern sensor technology and computer technology. The research will focus on the development of new method to get the profile in order to improve the repeatability of the inertial based pavement roughness system, the hardware design and the software development which is used for data sampling and data analysis. Finally maximum entropy spectral analysis method was used to evalu

ate the road profile spectrum.In order to get evaluate the accuracy and correction of the laser profiler system, different roughness devices (including Dipstick, direct type profiler and the laser profiler developed) were operated in the test sites. The research focused on several performance measures, such as repeatability (before and after new method analysis), impact of operating speed and sample interval, correlativity and etc. IRI from these devices were analyzed to evaluate the correlativity between these devices. Some regression models were developed in this research. Test results show that the new method can improve the repeatability of the profiler system. The laser profiler system has good repeatability and the operating speed and sample interval do not have a significant impact on the inertial based roughness measuring system. With the reliable results, the system is ready to be used in the field application within the speed and sample interval range. Through the spectrum an

alysis, it shows that the spectrum has a qualitative relation with pavement roughness conditions.