New software, called POWERPAVE, from the Concrete Reinforcing Steel Institute sifts a multitude of variables to predict early-life behavior of jointless concrete paving.

FORMATIVE HOURS Software tool looks at early life of a pour. (Photo courtesy of Texas A&M University)

"You can fine-tune it no end," says Michael Plei, manager of transportation programs for CRSI, based in Schaumberg, Ill. POWERPAVE is designed for continuously reinforced concrete pavement, in which conventional concrete pavement's regularly spaced joints are replaced by tight, random cracking. To keep cracks within parameters, their width and spacing are controlled by the longitudinal reinforcing steel, concrete mix characteristics, and other variables.

Plei says the software builds on design assumptions that can be revised if conditions change as installation proceeds. This allows adjustments to mix or curing controls. "It's the first 72 hours–[the software] analyzes what happens between curing and whatever loads are put on," Plei says. The program costs $295. Call Plei at 847-517-1200, ext. 20 for more information.