5 Ways Technology Has Improved the Paving Process

If you’re not in the asphalt industry, you probably don’t think about paving unless you’re driving on a road that’s full of potholes. The paving industry is always developing and growing, though. Here are some of the top ways that technological advancements have simplified the paving process and created smoother roads.

1. Reduced Cutting Time

Before a paving company can start putting down new asphalt, it has to get rid of the old covering. In the past, companies would manually cut away the old asphalt with a diamond-bladed road saw. By partnering with innovators in the hydraulics industry, paving companies now have access to hydraulic cutters that clear away old asphalt in huge chunks. When they spend less time clearing away old asphalt, companies can charge lower rates and complete jobs more quickly.

2. Quicker Planning

Once a paving team has a road clear of asphalt, its members need to examine what is left of the road and determine the best plan forward. Rather than using a sight glass and plumb bob to calculate the road’s slope, they can use laser measures to figure out how steep an area is. These advancements are especially helpful when contractors are working on long stretches of road at the same time.

3. Safer Subbase Testing

There is a layer of subbase below each layer of asphalt that helps support cars, trucks, and other traffic. In the past, paving companies did not have a method for testing this material’s condition, so they would only replace it after a hole or major crack formed. Now, though, contractors can test the subbase’s integrity every time they scrape off the asphalt using a nuclear density check, which looks for areas of the subbase that are less than 99% dense. They also test the subbase by driving over it with a 72,000-pound truck and looking for areas that sink over an inch when the truck passes.

4. More Targeted Repairs

When part of a road’s asphalt cracks or breaks, paving companies do not have to dig cubic feet of material out of the road to start the repair. Instead, they use a geo-grid to support the road they’re working on and complete the repairs after digging for less than two feet, reducing labor costs and cutting repair times. 

5. Easier Collaboration

Because the paving process is simpler and quicker than it was in the past, it’s easier for paving contractors to work together instead of competing with each other. When they’re using high-quality, partially automated equipment, contractors can share tools without losing too much time on their own jobs. They can also use technological advancements in professional networks such as LinkedIn to get help completing a commission or figuring out how to handle a steep grade.

Like most industries, the world of paving is constantly improving thanks to technological developments. If you want to work with a paving company that is dedicated to technological advancement and collaboration within the industry, reach out to the Pavement Network today. Email us at admin@pavementnetwork.com or call us at 415-659-8669 to reach the top paving experts.