Continuously Reinforced Concrete Pavement Cracking Patterns and Properties with Internal Curing and Active Cracking

Sachindra Dahal, Jeffery Raphael Roesler

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


Transverse cracking in continuously reinforced concrete pavement (CRCP) develops over time and may exhibit irregular patterns such as cluster cracks, Y-shaped cracks, and divided cracks. These undesirable cracking patterns can increase the probability of premature spalling and punchouts. Ideally, a uniform transverse cracking pattern with small crack widths leads to favorable long-term performance in CRCP. An experimental field project was constructed with internally cured concrete and active cracking to control crack initiation timing, patterns, and properties. Prewetted fine lightweight aggregate was used for internal curing, and edge notches of 2 in. depth and 2 ft length every 4 ft along the test section were sawcut for active crack control. The three experimental CRCP sections in Illinois were monitored for crack spacing, crack width, and formation of undesirable cracks over a 4-year period. Internally cured concrete significantly reduced the undesirable crack patterns relative to the control section. Internally cured concrete coupled with active crack concrete produced superior crack patterns and properties, that is, uniform crack spacing of 3.6 ft without cluster cracks, 0.2 mm surface crack width, and only a small number of undesirable cracks. Active crack control produced a higher number of transverse cracks near the terminal joint (last 150 ft) compared with the control section. Moisture and temperature management with active crack control during construction of the CRCP provided a desirable crack pattern and properties that should increase the overall service life of a pavement.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationTransportation Research Record
PublisherSAGE Publishing
Number of pages9
StatePublished - Feb 2022

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering


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