Numerical Analysis of Saw Cutting: The Influence of Environmental Conditions


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Title: Numerical Analysis of Saw Cutting: The Influence of Environmental Conditions

Author(s): K. Raoufi, T. Nantung, and J. Weiss

Publication: Special Publication

Volume: 266


Appears on pages(s): 87-100

Keywords: cracking; environmental conditions; saw cutting; temperature; wind speed.

Date: 10/1/2009

Stresses develop in portland cement concrete pavement at early ages when volume changes associated with hydration reactions, moisture loss, and temperature variations are restrained. Saw-cuts are placed in concrete pavements to provide a weakened plane that enables cracks to form as intended, thereby relieving developed residual stresses. Although the idea of creating a weakened plane by saw-cutting is relatively straight forward, practically determining the timing and depth of saw-cut can be complicated in field construction. This study uses a finite element model (FEMMASSE) to evaluate influence of saw-cut timing on cracking behavior of concrete pavements. The model considers the influence of ambient temperature, cooling effect of wind, and time of casting. It is shown that the saw-cutting time window was reduced as ambient temperature was increased. Higher wind speeds influence the saw-cutting time window to a lesser degree at high ambient temperatures than they do at lower ambient temperatures. It was also shown that the time of casting influences the saw-cutting time window and it needs to be considered in estimating the saw-cutting time window especially at high ambient temperatures.