On September 14th, three representatives from The Earle Companies attended a ribbon cutting ceremony at Rowan University for a 50-ton Heavy Vehicle Simulator (HVS) which is home to the brand-new Center for Research and Education in Advanced Transportation Engineering systems (CREATEs) at the South Jersey Technology Park at Rowan University.
Rowan is the only college or university in the Northeast to house an HVS, and that means teams of students and faculty will partner with and conduct research for state entities and manufacturers to improve roadways, reduce environmental impacts and more. In sections that can be dedicated to specific organizations, those researchers will be able to assess the status of existing structures and evaluate the potential of new materials and how they will hold up to cars, trucks, and airplanes.
The CREATEs team already is partnering with the Army Corps of Engineers; New Jersey Department of Transportation; Earle Asphalt Co., Wall Township, New Jersey; and American Asphalt Company, Inc., Mt. Ephraim, New Jersey.
Those partnerships provide Rowan students with the hands-on experience critical to their learning experience and future careers. They also provide government offices and businesses with extensive research and development support, noted Rowan’s president, Dr. Ali Houshmand.
CREATEs — a 50-foot by 90-foot structure that, in addition to the HVS, includes offices and space to run tests as well as an outdoor testing environment that can be designated for specific types of materials and clients — will employ up to 10 personnel in the first two years. Those professionals will be able to test asphalt, concrete, other design or construction materials, soils and more in climate-controlled environments. The maximum 2.5 mph electric-powered wheel that is part of the HVS duplicates the effect of traffic, enabling researchers to evaluate such topics as soil failure, moisture impact, and road structures and for clients to ensure quality and save money