Heated pavement technology tested at Des moines International Airport

ScienceDaily | 3/28/2017 | Staff
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When a winter storm approaches, Ceylan can use that app to turn on the heated pavement system and, thanks to real-time video capability, watch as snow and ice melts away.

Late last fall Ceylan and his research team from Iowa State's Program for Sustainable Pavement Engineering and Research installed two, 15-by-13.5-foot test slabs of electrically conductive concrete into the apron at the southwest corner of the Elliott Aviation hangar on the north side of the Des Moines International Airport. The hangar is in the middle of the general aviation apron devoted to smaller aircraft.

Ceylan - Iowa - State - Professor - Construction

Ceylan, an Iowa State professor of civil, construction and environmental engineering, still working the system's phone app, called up pictures of the slabs during one of this winter's rare snowfalls. The apron all around the test slabs was covered with an inch or two of white snow; the two slabs, marked by diagonally painted red stripes, were clear and drying.

"We have proven this technology does work," Ceylan said. "Our goal is to keep airports open, safe and accessible. We don't want any slips or falls, or any aircraft skidding off runways. Our technologies can contribute to providing a safe environment and fewer delays."

Thing - Ceylan - Success - Test - Slabs

It's the first thing Ceylan brings up after noting the success of the test slabs at the Des Moines airport: "People wonder how much this costs."

Ceylan and his research group have run the numbers: Using 333 watts per square meter (about the energy used by three light bulbs) for seven hours, the operating cost is about 19 cents per square meter.

Seven - Hours - Way - Inch - Ice

Seven hours "is way more than enough to melt an inch of ice or snow," Ceylan said.

While the installation costs would be higher than regular pavements, the heated pavement technology also saves on the cost of plows, de-icing chemicals and wastewater treatment of chemical runoff.

Ali - Nahvi

Ali Nahvi,...
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