Dr. Kamil Kaloush
IRF: Many pavements still exhibit shortcomings in terms of durability, road-user qualities, strength and repair needs. What does your research on Fiber Reinforced Asphalt Concrete mixtures tell us on this problem?
Dr. Kamil Kaloush: Our research on fiber reinforced asphalt concrete has shown that it is a cost-effective process and enhances the performance and durability of pavements. We have observed improvements in the engineering properties of asphalt mixtures in the laboratory and by monitoring field constructed projects. Reduced deformation and cracking translates into road-user benefits such as better ride quality, lower maintenance frequencies, and safer roadways. In certain situations where resources are limited, fiber reinforced pavements offer the advantage of reduced pavement thickness. The use of fibers provide many benefits and fits the criteria for a sustainable pavement design process.
IRF: Road networks around the region are facing the pressure of increased traffic and more extreme weather events. What are the most promising technologies Asian governments should be investing in?
Dr. Kaloush: For increased traffic, the use of modified pavement systems is one process that will help improve performance. The use of fibers, crumb rubber (from recycled tires) and polymers have shown to be cost-effective technologies to enhance the performance of roadways.
For extreme weather events, it is really difficult to talk about one specific technology. Perhaps the most important line of defense is the use of preventive measures to reduce the impacts. Asian governments need to evaluate their current designs and specifications in view of increased occurrence of future extreme events. They need to have good and accurate data of the road network at hand so it can be used for realistic modeling and forecasting of future impacts. The use of field surveys can also help identify potential risk areas so preventive measures can be evaluated and implemented.
IRF: As a researcher, what is the chief value of presenting your work at an IRF conference?
Dr. Kaloush: The IRF continually emphasizes best practices world-wide; to me as a researcher, the IRF provides a platform by which government agencies, businesses, and researchers are able to work together in addressing world challenges. The chief value is not only in presenting my work, but also in learning from others on how they are tackling problems. Collective minds working together are more powerful in addressing world challenges.