Graduation Year


Document Type




Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)

Degree Granting Department

Civil and Environmental Engineering

Major Professor

Qing Lu, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Panagiotis Anastasopoulos, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Manjriker Gunaratne, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Fred Mannering, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Mingyang Li, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Lu Lu, Ph.D.


Asphalt Overlay, Endogenous Design, Life-Cycle Assessment (LCA), Pavement Performance, Unobserved Heterogeneity


Highway pavement is a critical component of the highway transportation infrastructure. After the construction of a pavement system, pavement condition will deteriorate over time due to a combination effect of material aging, traffic loading, and environmental impact. To restore the pavement performance and to reduce its adverse effects on public users and environment, asphalt overlay activities are conducted frequently during the service life of a pavement. As a key component that bridges the overlay policies with future pavement performance, economic cost and environmental impact, the forecast accuracy of post-overlay pavement performance model is extremely important. However, most of previous studies did not consider the effect of endogenous overlay design and continuous asphalt overlay thickness on the initiation of pavement distresses and roughness progression in their pavement performance models. To fill the research gap, a series of post-overlay distress initiation models and post-overlay roughness progression models were proposed with integrated asphalt overlay projects from the long-term pavement performance (LTPP) Specific Pavement Study (SPS-3 and SPS-5) and General Pavement Study (GPS-6) programs. Then, the life-cycle environmental and economic impacts of different overlay strategies were evaluated by incorporating the proposed post-overlay roughness model in the integrated LCA-LCCA framework. Based on the analysis results, endogenous asphalt overlay design and continuous asphalt overlay thickness were validated to have a significant effect on post-overlay roughness progression and distress initiation, which should not be ignored in scheduling pavement maintenance and rehabilitation (M&R) activities.