Evaluation of different methods for the estimation of the bitumen fatigue life with DSR testing

André Pereira, Rui Micaelo, Luís Quaresma, Maria Teresa Cidade

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)


Asphalt fatigue cracking is one of the phenomena that contribute most to degradation of road pavements and it may initiate within the bitumen or at the bitumen-aggregate interface. The cohesive cracking resistance can be evaluated with bitumen testing. Commonly, the Dynamic Shear Rheometer (DSR) is used for bitumen testing. This paper presents an evaluation of different methods proposed in literature for the estimation of the bitumen fatigue life. A neat and a polymer modified bitumen (PMB) were tested with time sweep tests (continuous and discontinuous loading) and with incremental load amplitude (linear amplitude sweep test). The results are analysed with the traditional approach (Nf,50 corresponding to 50 % initial modulus reduction) and other methodologies, namely the Ratio of Dissipated Energy Change (RDEC) and the Viscoelastic Continuum Damage (VECD) approach. The results obtained showed, as expected, that the PMB has a higher resistance to fatigue than the neat bitumen. The test conditions and the method used to evaluate the fatigue resistance lead to significant differences in the estimated bitumen fatigue life. The plateau value (RDEC) shows very good correlation with Nf,50 obtained from constant strain amplitude tests, regardless of the type of bitumen or test conditions. The fatigue life parameters obtained from the linear amplitude sweep test is very sensitive to the analysis method. Healing during non-loading periods has a large effect on the PMB fatigue life while no effect in the neat bitumen fatigue life for small to intermediate rest periods.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication8th RILEM International Symposium on Testing and Characterization of Sustainable and Innovative Bituminous Materials
EditorsF. Canestrari , M. Partl
Place of PublicationDordrecht, Netherlands
Number of pages12
ISBN (Electronic)978-94-017-7342-3
ISBN (Print)978-94-017-7341-6
Publication statusPublished - 26 Sept 2016

Publication series

NameRILEM Bookseries
ISSN (Print)2211-0844
ISSN (Electronic)2211-0852


  • DSR
  • Fatigue life
  • Healing
  • VECD


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