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Road Condition Measurement Related to Vehicle Operating Factors
Published January 01, 1982 by SAE Australasia in Australia
Road surface condition, and in particular its longitudinal profile characteristics (or "roughness"), affects passenger vehicle ride, maintenance costs and rolling losses. It also affects the dynamic road loading generated by heavy goods vehicles. This paper describes current methods of measuring road roughness and examines the relationship between roughness and perceived riding quality (or "serviceability") and the relationship between roughness and dynamic loading caused by various heavy vehicle suspensions. Relationships of fuel and repair costs to roughness are also considered through the use of a computer model. Current roughness measurement methods are critically examined in the light of the relationships developed above. It is concluded that roughness measurements are a key element in the cycle of pavement loading (by heavy vehicles), pavement serviceability, vehicle operating costs and energy usage. It is also concluded that roughness measurement techniques could be improved to better reflect the increasing importance of infrastructure costs, vehicle operating costs and energy usage as compared to the more traditional concern of riding comfort.