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Bitumen properties using rubber powder

bitumen combine with rubber powder

Despite its wide range of applications, bitumen suffers from various limitations and weaknesses in its physical and mechanical properties. These weaknesses include:

  1. Temperature Sensitivity: Bitumen exhibits relatively high sensitivity to temperature changes, leading to a limited service temperature range. It becomes excessively soft at high temperatures, resulting in rutting, while its low elasticity at low temperatures makes it prone to thermal cracking. Additionally, the viscoelastic nature of bitumen can cause permanent deformations in the asphalt mixture.
  2. Physical Weaknesses: Bitumen lacks desirable physical properties, which can impact the performance of asphalt pavements. These weaknesses include low stiffness, poor resistance to deformation under heavy traffic loads, and susceptibility to aging and deterioration due to exposure to environmental factors.

To address these challenges, additives are commonly used to modify bitumen properties. Studies have shown that certain additives used in cement and concrete can also be effective in modifying bitumen. Fillers, in particular, are widely employed to enhance the properties of bitumen.

One noteworthy additive used in bitumen modification is rubber powder. Rubber powder derived from used and worn tires holds significant interest due to its positive impact on asphalt performance and the impressive results obtained from its incorporation into bitumen. The utilization of rubber powder not only contributes to the environmentally friendly disposal of discarded tires but also improves the performance mechanism of asphalt, leading to enhanced properties and durability.

In various samples, the internal rubber powder content ranges from 54% to 74% of the weight of the bitumen 60/70 sample, 20% of the weight of the VB bitumen sample, and between 6% and 26% of the sample weight. The interaction between the rubber powder particles and bitumen is primarily physical in nature. Prior to mixing, the surface of the rubber powder exhibits defects that become invisible after mixing, leaving no visible traces. To ensure sufficient swelling and coverage, rubber powder is added to an aromatic or petroleum oil mixture. The extent of interaction increases with a larger surface area of the rubber powder. Greater swelling of the rubber powder, coupled with two-way penetration, enhances the recovery of rubber powder-modified bitumen.

The softening point of bitumen is measured to determine its melting temperature, which provides an estimation of asphalt's resistance to rutting and permanent deformation. Experimental results demonstrate that the addition of 26% rubber powder increases the softening point by 40% and the elastic returnability by 366%. As the percentage of rubber powder increases, the thermal sensitivity of the sample decreases. Reduced thermal sensitivity is advantageous for enhancing resistance to creasing and cracking at low temperatures.

Incorporating rubber powder at approximately 25% of the sample's weight significantly improves the bitumen's ability to withstand pressure and enhances its elastic resilience despite its inherent hardness. These findings indicate that by adding rubber powder to asphalt concrete mixtures, the occurrence of rutting failures and high-temperature cracks can be mitigated or prevented.

Application of improving bitumen properties using rubber powder 

The method of improving bitumen properties using rubber powder typically involves incorporating the rubber powder into the bitumen through a mixing process. Here are the general steps involved:

  1. Rubber Powder Preparation: Rubber powder is derived from recycled tires. The tires are shredded or ground into small particles to obtain the rubber powder. The particle size and distribution of the rubber powder can vary depending on the desired properties of the modified bitumen.
  2. Bitumen Heating: The bitumen, typically of a specific grade like bitumen 80/100, is heated to a suitable temperature to achieve a fluid state for mixing. This temperature is usually within the range specified by the manufacturer or based on the specific requirements of the modification process.
  3. Rubber Powder Addition: The heated bitumen is mixed with the rubber powder. The mixing process can be carried out using different methods such as high-shear mixing equipment or a blending plant. The rubber powder is gradually added to the bitumen while ensuring proper dispersion and homogeneity of the mixture.
  4. Mixing and Blending: The bitumen and rubber powder mixture is thoroughly mixed and blended to ensure that the rubber particles are evenly distributed throughout the bitumen matrix. This step helps to achieve a uniform modification of the bitumen and optimize the desired properties.
  5. Cooling and Storage: After the mixing process, the modified bitumen is allowed to cool down and solidify. The modified bitumen can then be stored in appropriate containers or transported to the application site for use in asphalt mixtures.

Applications

  1. Asphalt Pavements: The modified bitumen with rubber powder can be used in the construction of asphalt pavements. It improves the elasticity, flexibility, and resistance to cracking and rutting of the asphalt mixture. This leads to enhanced durability, longer service life, and better performance of the pavement under heavy traffic loads and varying temperature conditions.
  2. Road Resurfacing: Rubber powder-modified bitumen is also applied in road resurfacing projects. It helps to rejuvenate aging or deteriorated asphalt surfaces, improving their resistance to cracking and increasing their lifespan.
  3. Asphalt Mixtures: Modified bitumen with rubber powder can be used as a binder in asphalt mixtures. It enhances the properties of the asphalt, such as elasticity, stiffness, and resistance to deformation, resulting in improved performance and longevity of the asphalt mixture.
  4. Bridge Deck Waterproofing: Rubber powder-modified bitumen can be utilized for waterproofing applications on bridge decks. The modified bitumen forms a durable and watertight membrane that protects the underlying structures from water ingress and corrosion.

It's important to note that the specific dosage of rubber powder and the application techniques may vary depending on the desired properties, climate, traffic conditions, and project specifications. It is advisable to consult with experts and follow industry guidelines when incorporating rubber powder into bitumen for optimal results.

ATDM CO is a renowned manufacturer and exporter specializing in Bitumen 60/70. We offer a diverse range of quality grades, ensuring that our customers have options that meet their specific requirements. Our Bitumen 60/70 is available in various packaging options, including drums, bags, and bulk quantities.

To cater to different customer preferences, we classify our products into three distinct types: premium, second, and third grades. Each grade is produced with meticulous attention to detail, ensuring consistent quality while considering varying production costs and facilities.

At ATDM CO, we understand that our customers have unique needs and varying volume requirements. That's why we strive to provide a wide range of options, allowing our clients to choose the most suitable product that aligns with their project specifications and budget.

Whether you require Bitumen 60/70 for small-scale projects or large-scale ventures, ATDM CO is committed to delivering reliable and high-quality products that meet your expectations.

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