Determining thermal conductivity of paving materials using cylindrical sample geometry

J. D. Carlson, R. Bhardwaj, P. E. Phelan, K. E. Kaloush, J. S. Golden

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

39 Scopus citations


A testing procedure was developed for determining thermal conductivity k using the same cylindrical specimen geometry that is commonly used for standard mechanical property testing. An experimental test apparatus was constructed with a calculated systematic uncertainty of ±0.021 W m-1 °C-1 (±5%) for a k=0.42 W M-1 °C-1. A cylindrical reference sample of ultrahigh molecular weight polyethylene resulted in a thermal conductivity of 0.441±0.022 W m-1 °C-1 (±5.1%) with 95% confidence. Conventional specimens of hot-mix asphalt and portland cement concrete mixtures were tested and yielded k values of 0.896±0.023 W m-1 °C-1 (±2.6%) and 1.719±0.048 W m-1 °C-1 (±2.8%), both at a 95% confidence interval. These results fall within common literature value ranges for these materials, and indicate an acceptable level of accuracy and repeatability for this new test method.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number002002QMT
Pages (from-to)186-195
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Materials in Civil Engineering
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Cylindrical geometry
  • Hot-mix asphalt
  • Paving materials
  • Portland cement concrete
  • Thermal conductivity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Building and Construction
  • General Materials Science
  • Mechanics of Materials


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