The purpose of this research was to investigate the effects of reclaimed asphalt pavement (RAP) content and cement content on the strength and durability of recycled aggregate base materials. Specifically, the unconfined compressive strength (UCS) and final dielectric value in the Tube Suction Test (TST) were measured in a full-factorial experimental design including five RAP contents, five cement contents, and three replicate specimens of each possible treatment. Specimen mixtures consisted of 0, 25, 50, 75, or 100 percent RAP and 0.0, 0.5, 1.0, 1.5, or 2.0 percent Type I/II Portland cement. Both the RAP and base materials were sampled from the I-84 pavement reconstruction project performed in Weber Canyon near Morgan, Utah, during the summers of 2004 and 2005. The laboratory testing procedures consisted of material characterizations, specimen preparation, and subjection of the specimens to strength and durability testing, and the data were evaluated using analysis of variance (ANOVA) testing. Both the RAP and base materials included in this research were determined to be non-plastic, and the AASHTO and Unified soil classifications for the RAP material were determined to be A-1-a and SM (well-graded sand with gravel), respectively, and for the base material they were A-1-a and SW-SM (well-graded sand with silt and gravel), respectively. The optimum moisture contents (OMCs) for the blended materials were between 5.6 and 6.6 percent, and maximum dry density (MDD) values were between 129.7 and 135.5 lb/ft3. In both cases, decreasing values were associated with increasing RAP contents. The results of the ANOVA performed on the UCS data indicate that UCS decreases from 425 to 208 psi as RAP content increases from 0 to 100 percent and increases from 63 to 564 psi as cement content increases from 0.0 to 2.0 percent. Similarly, the final dielectric value decreases from 14.9 to 6.1 as RAP content increases from 0 to 100 percent and decreases from 14.0 to 5.8 as cement content increases from 0.0 to 2.0 percent. With design criteria requiring 7-day UCS values between 300 and 400 psi and final dielectric values less than 10 in the TST, the results of this research suggest that milling plans should be utilized to achieve RAP contents in the range of 50 to 75 percent, and a cement content of 1.0 percent should be specified for this material. Cement contents less than 1.0 percent are not sufficient to stabilize the material, and greater cement contents may cause cracking. Because control of the actual cement content in the field depends on the contractor's equipment and skill, inspection protocols should be implemented during construction to ensure high-quality work. Additional recommendations are associated with the construction process. The specimens prepared in this research were compacted to relative densities of 100 percent using modified Proctor energy. Therefore, field compaction levels must approach these density values if the same material properties are to be achieved. In addition, all specimens tested in this study were cured at 100 percent relative humidity. Following compaction in the field, cement-treated layers should be moistened frequently during the first few days after construction or promptly sealed with a prime coat or wearing surface to ensure that the cement continues to hydrate. Variability in RAP and cement contents should also be minimized to achieve consistent material properties.



College and Department

Ira A. Fulton College of Engineering and Technology; Civil and Environmental Engineering



Date Submitted


Document Type





reclaimed asphalt pavement, portland cement, chemical stabilization, RAP content, unconfined compressive strength, tube suction test