Ever since it was established, BRRC has been assigned to promote technological progress in road construction through research and development. Over the years, the Centre has built a solid practice in serving professionals through technical and documentary assistance.
Global warming is caused mainly by increased concentrations of greenhouse gases, in which CO2 emissions play a major part. Prompted by a number of developments such as the Kyoto protocol, road managers, road contractors and material producers try to reduce emissions. The transport sector is responsible for approximately 25 % of all greenhouse gas emissions, with the greater part being due to road transport. Energy consumption is also closely monitored in the road construction sector. Road managers and contractors have an interest in quantifying greenhouse gas emissions and energy consumption.
The right choice of structure and constituent layers is a primary concern to designers in both the private (engineering consultants, architects) and the public sector (technical departments of municipalities, provinces and regions) who have to make designs for new roads or for maintenance, renovation and adaptation works to existing infrastructure.
The Portable Friction Tester allows continuous measurements of the skid resistance of road markings and road surfaces over a given distance, in situations where the British pendulum tester (portable skid resistance tester) cannot be used.
The everyday life of road workers is often fraught with danger. High travel speeds and disrespectful drivers are an unwanted component to the environment of road workers, making it difficult for them to accomplish their tasks. High speed means there is little time for the driver to detect the work zone and, in event of an accident, the consequences will be more severe.
After developing a harmonized frameword for collecting data on accidents (due to interaction with traffic) involving road workers, the BRoWSER project will provide road authorities with the necessary tools for collecting and presenting such data.
The ASAP project addresses the issues of speed management in work zones. Speed management of traffic in work zones is important for the safety of both the road user and road worker. A work zone will introduce deviations from normal travel in a discrete road section and appropriate speed is needed to ensure that the driver can navigate the vehicle through the work zone, particularly if there are abrupt lateral deviations from general road design standards.
The aim of STARs project was to optimize network availability, road worker safety and road user safety during road works. The objective was to develop a methodology to score road work schemes on these three interdependent risk areas which are usually considered in isolation, and to produce a practical tool for use particularly by contractors and contracting authorities in planning and assessing road work schemes and setting contractor targets. To achieve this objective, three risk equations for performance at road works have been developed and included in the STARs Evaluation Tool, together with a Multicriteria Solver Module to transform the scores into a “STARs” scale. This scale is used to produce an unbiased rating of individual management strategies.