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Research Report 094 Friction and tyre abrasion characteristics of New Zealand road surfaces

Published: | Category: Activity management , Research programme , Research & reports | Audience: General

This report presents the results of a research project, carried out in 1994, to investigate the suitability of fixed slip friction meters for on-road determination of pavement surface abrasiveness of New Zealand SEALED roads. The research was intended to establish the degree of correlation between tyre rubber abrasion and the road surface friction coefficient, as measured by the Findlay Irvine GripTester. The procedures used for the study, and the recommendations for improved procedures, are described.

The degree of correlation has not been satisfactorily established because:

  • the accuracy of the tyre abrasion measurements was insufficient
  • the range of friction values of the various pavement surfaces, and the accuracy of the measurement of rubber loss, was insufficient to determine the influence of friction on pavement surface abrasiveness
  • the influence of the pavement surface microtexture was not measured. The geometry of the microtexture is believed to play an important role in determining pavement surface abrasiveness, which may be independent of the influence of the surface friction.

The GripTester or any other similar friction meter is unlikely to be developed as the most appropriate method for on-road determination of pavement surface abrasiveness. The inherent difficulties of friction measurements, and the likely influence of surface texture geometry which may be independent of the friction, impede the use of friction meters for this purpose.

Keywords: abrasion, friction, GripTester, New Zealand, pavement, road texture, tyre tread wear, vehicle

Publication details

  • Author:
  • Published: 1997
  • Reference: 094