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Public Roads - July/August 2014

July/August 2014
Issue No:
Vol. 78 No. 1
Publication Number:
Table of Contents

Internet Watch

Improving Access to LTPP Data

by Y. Jane Jiang

Established in 1987 as part of the Strategic Highway Research Program (SHRP), the Long-Term Pavement Performance (LTPP) program’s purpose is to collect pavement data to better understand how and why pavements perform the way they do. Since the end of SHRP in 1992, the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) has managed the LTPP program and monitored more than 2,500 inservice pavement test sections in the United States and Canada. The resulting data form the most comprehensive pavement database in the world. So, how do highway engineers, researchers, planners, students, and others find and analyze exactly the data they need?

To answer that challenge, the program launched a new Web-based data portal, LTPP InfoPave™, in January 2014 at It is the primary Web site to access LTPP data and other resource information about the program. The interface is designed to improve access to data and provide information and tools to maximize its use.

“LTPP InfoPave includes creative tools for data viewing, identification, and selection that help users create personalized datasets, summary reports, queries, and much more,” says Aramis López, team leader of the LTPP program under FHWA’s Office of Infrastructure Research and Development. “It also gives users the ability to share data selections, views, or queries with other users, which can exponentially improve LTPP data usage across geographic boundaries and time zones.”

With LTPP InfoPave, the data are at the user’s fingertips, enabling easy, efficient access to the right data for further study. “I’m definitely a fan of the new LTPP InfoPave,” says Stephen Cropley, technology director at Transmetric America Inc. “This does raise the bar for beauty in design and ease of use, and is cleverly designed for both [desktops] and tablets. It’s really impressive.”

Flexible Features

LTPP InfoPave provides a number of new features for data presentation and extractions that were not available previously through the predecessor program, LTPP Products Online. These features include the following:

  • Find Sections–This feature helps to narrow down selections to specific pavement sections and provides an overview of the LTPP experiments and core data elements for those sections.
  • Data Selector–Users can identify and select data of interest to them, and the tool classifies the data in an organized tree structure.
  • Pivot Data–This feature enables users to view data in multiple ways. It is a dynamic means of filtering a large selection of information using a variety of useful criteria, such as climate region, pavement age, or minimum number of vehicles per day.
  • Section Location and Data Map – This feature presents section locations geographically and includes major landmarks, such as cities, highways, and State lines. It offers functionality to zoom in and out, pan, and filter results using any combination of defined categories.
  • Section Timeline–The timeline provides the event history of each LTPP test section, including the construction, maintenance and rehabilitation, and monitoring activities that occurred during the life of the test section.
  • SQL Export–The Structured Query Language (SQL) export feature provides all the tools necessary for easy querying, viewing results, and creating individualized datasets. Its user-friendly design enables users with limited SQL experience to write effective queries.

Expanded Resources

In addition to the variety of new tools for finding, filtering, and presenting data, the LTPP InfoPave site offers an expanded reference library with hundreds of documents. The library contains research reports published as a part of the LTPP program, as well as an extensive set of LTPP documents that explain how the data are collected, processed, and stored.

In addition to the Web-based site, the LTPP program developed LTPP InfoPave Mobile, a companion application available for devices running the Apple® operating system. The app provides information on LTPP announcements, section locations with data, and a mobile-friendly version of FHWA’s Distress Identification Manual (FHWA-RD-03-031).

LTPP InfoPave is available at For more information about the LTPP program, contact the LTPP Customer Support Service Center at 202–493–3035 or

Y. Jane Jiang is a research highway engineer with FHWA.