Nebraska LTAP


Date of this Version


Document Type



Liao, Y., Mohammadi, M. E., Wood, R. L., Kim, Y-R. (2020). Improvement of Low Traffic Volume Gravel Roads in Nebraska. NDOT Research Report SPR-P1(16) M040.


In the state of Nebraska, over one-third of roadways are unpaved, and consequently require a significant amount of financial and operational resources to maintain their operation. Undesired behavior of surface gravel aggregates and the road surfaces can include rutting, corrugation, and ponding that may lead to reduced driving safety, speed or network efficiency, and fuel economy. This study evaluates the parameters that characterize the performance and condition of gravel roads overtime period related to various aggregate mix designs. The parameters, including width, slope, and crown profiles, are examples of performance criteria. As remote sensing technologies have advanced in the recent decade, various techniques have been introduced to collect high quality, accurate, and dense data efficiently that can be used for roadway performance assessments. Within this study, two remote sensing platforms, including an unpiloted aerial system (UAS) and ground-based lidar scanner, were used to collect point cloud data of selected roadway sites with various mix design constituents and further processed for digital assessments. Within the assessment process, statistical parameters such as standard deviation, mean value, and coefficient of variance are calculated for the extracted crown profiles. In addition, the study demonstrated that the point clouds obtained from both lidar scanners and UAS derived SfM can be used to characterize the roadway geometry accurately and extract critical information accurately.