Theses and Dissertations


Issuing Body

Mississippi State University


Howard, Isaac L.

Committee Member

Doyle, Jesse D.

Committee Member

Ramirez-Avila, John J.

Date of Degree


Document Type

Graduate Thesis - Open Access


Civil Engineering

Degree Name

Master of Science (M.S.)


James Worth Bagley College of Engineering


Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering


When evaluating low volume roads (LVRs), structural capacity emphasis is minimal since deterioration typically results from environmental factors. However, in cases where LVR’s experience rapidly increased traffic loading, structural condition becomes important. The research objective was to determine whether the Light Weight Deflectometer (LWD) can be used as a structural evaluation tool for LVRs in the aforementioned conditions. This study explored the capability of LWD equipment in evaluating major factors that influence flexible pavement structural capacity: load induced deterioration, soil moisture, and asphalt temperature. Falling Weight Deflectometer (FWD) and LWD tests were performed to measure pavement structural condition. LWD was shown applicable for LVRs experiencing accelerated traffic. The LWD is portable and efficient for LVRs when high rut depths are permitted. The LWD and FWD produced similar trends. The LWD, based on this thesis, can be recommended for use in lieu of FWD to assess structural condition of LVRs for rapidly increased traffic loading.