Performance of Dust Palliatives on Unpaved Roads in Rural Alaska

Dust control in many rural Alaska communities is becoming a priority. Fugitive dust impacts health, quality of life and increases road maintenance costs as material is lost from the road surface. Over the last several years several agencies in Alaska including the Alaska Department of transportation and Public Facilities (ADOT&PF), local governments, and several native corporations have been working on solutions to the problem of fugitive dust. One viable solution these agencies have been attempting is to control dust through the use of chemical palliatives applied to unpaved roads and runways. This method can be expensive depending on the palliative used on the unpaved surface. Agencies are currently focusing on calcium chloride (CaCl2), synthetic fluids and a few promising other products such as enzymatic fluids. While experience in Alaska with CaCl2 is extensive, the longevity of the product on unpaved surfaces under different conditions is only known qualitatively: when is the road getting to dusty from a visual perspective. Hence reapplication is either on a set time schedule (such as done on the Elliot Highway) or when the road becomes too dusty and complaints are received from area residents (as is most likely done on some shorter more rural roads). These methods might work well given the experience, but may not be cost effective. In some cases, reapplication of CaCl2 may come too soon when the previous application is still performing adequately. Further, the longevity of other products on rural Alaska roads is still unknown. The first objective of this project is to assess the longevity of different palliatives newly applied to rural Alaska village roads over two summer seasons. For this study we will monitor three villages (Tanana, Fort Yukon, and Galena) that have or will be receiving palliatives all of which are close to Fairbanks making frequent measurements possible. In addition we will also monitor palliatives that will be applied to sections of road and monitored in North Pole & in Point McKenzie, Alaska. We will monitoring and asses palliative performance using an instrument we developed to measure dust that can be lofted off of unpaved roads (loftable dust) and runways known as UAF-DUSTM. In addition to the proposed project described above the Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation (ADEC) has requested that we try to associate dust concentrations measured with UAF/DUSTM to measurements made using stationary monitors of the type used by regulatory agencies to monitor compliance with the regulatory standard. Hence, the second objective of this proposal is to correlate loftable dust concentrations measured with UAF- DUSTM to fugitive dust concentrations measured with static monitors. This proposed study will take place on the new test track proposed in the North Pole area & possibly in one more of the proposed study villages (Tanana, Galena, or Fort Yukon, Alaska). Developing this correlation will enable us to determine how much of the measured fugitive dust is due to unpaved roads, a controllable emission source and how much is due to uncontrollable sources.


  • English


  • Status: Active
  • Contract Numbers:


    410036 / 510019

  • Sponsor Organizations:

    Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation

    410 Willoughby Ave.
    Juneau, AK  United States  99801

    Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities

    Research & Technology Transfer
    2301 Peger Road
    Fairbanks, AK  United States  99709-5399

    RITA: Research and Innovative Technology Administration

    1200 New Jersey Ave, SE
    Washington, DC  United States  20590
  • Project Managers:

    Connor, Billy

  • Performing Organizations:

    Alaska University Transportation Center

    University of Alaska, Fairbanks
    P.O. Box 755900
    Fairbanks, AK  United States  99775-5900
  • Principal Investigators:

    Barnes, Dave

  • Start Date: 20100701
  • Expected Completion Date: 0
  • Actual Completion Date: 20140630
  • Source Data: RiP Project 27031

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01486628
  • Record Type: Research project
  • Source Agency: Alaska University Transportation Center
  • Contract Numbers: DTRT06-G-0011/G00003, 410036 / 510019
  • Files: UTC, RiP
  • Created Date: Jul 12 2013 1:00AM