Materials Testing

As in her job with ADOT, Kelly Baum gets to play in dirt to make sure the materials used in construction projects are up to the task.
A visit to the ADOT Materials Lab in Phoenix demonstrated how what taught in science, technology, engineering and mathematics helps those who build and maintain state highways.
Materials engineers evaluate everything from the rocks that go into cement to the reflective beads used in paints that stripe roadways to the bolts that help hold bridges together.
You might think that highway construction is all about big machinery, heavy-duty vehicles, massive structures and materials by the ton – but it’s not.
Hard to believe, but after more than 200 blog posts we’re still surprised by some of the things we find out here at ADOT. For example, did you know there’s a small yard adjacent to an ADOT field office parking lot filled with dozens of sign samples?
Yesterday we told you about ADOT’s Pavement Materials Testing group and how it is responsible for testing aggregate and creating asphalt friction course mix designs.
Placing asphalt friction course on a newly constructed road is sort of like icing a cake (stay with us here).