Sustainable pavement foundations with chemically stabilized quarry by-products

Erol Tutumluer, Issam Qamhia, Hasan Ozer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Quarry by-products (QB) are an industrial by-product of aggregate quarry processes. They are typically less than 1/4 on. (6 mm) in size and consist of coarse, medium, and fine sand particles, and a small clay/silt fraction. Quarry by-products are found abundantly all over the crushed rock extraction facilities in Illinois where they are produced during blasting, crushing, washing, and screening operations. Recent research conducted at the Illinois Center for Transportation (ICT) has evaluated the characteristics of QB materials collected from different quarries across the State of Illinois, and studied potential uses of QB in pavement applications. Because the Unconfined Compressive Strength (UCS) for QB materials was quite low, Portland cement and Class C fly ash chemical admixture stabilizers were used to improve the strength properties of QB materials which resulted in 10 to 30 times increases in laboratory determined UCS compared to virgin unstabilized QB samples. Such significant increases observed in the strength of stabilized QB materials have indicated suitability of QB for sustainable pavement applications. Full-scale test sections were constructed next with chemically stabilized QB base/subbase applications over a subgrade having a California Bearing Ratio (CBR) of 6% to represent medium volume flexible pavement applications. The test sections were evaluated for performance using Accelerated Pavement Testing (APT), which spanned over two years to include effects of harsh winter freeze. Field testing and forensic analysis techniques included Falling Weight Deflectometer (FWD) tests before and after trafficking, hot mix asphalt coring, Dynamic Cone Penetrometer (DCP) profiling of subsurface layers, and trenching to determine actual thicknesses and contribution of each pavement layer to the measured surface rutting. In general, results from APT and forensic analyses indicated satisfactory results and improved rutting performance.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)276-290
Number of pages15
JournalAdvances in Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering
StatePublished - 2019
Externally publishedYes


  • Accelerated Pavement Testing
  • Chemical Stabilization
  • DCP
  • Field Performance
  • Nondestructive Testing
  • Pavements
  • Quarry By-products
  • Sustainability

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geotechnical Engineering and Engineering Geology


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