Types of Bitumen Used for Road Construction

Striped red and white signal poles stand on border of asphalt roadside

Infrastructure is among the essential elements of financial growth in all economies worldwide. While various technologies have been introduced to boost the infrastructure of multiple countries, these will do little without transportation. Roads currently occupy a considerable percentage of the earth’s surface and will open up even seemingly useless regions. To this end, various companies have been established to take up road construction contracts on offer by various state and local governments worldwide.

You will nonetheless only run into losses without the right construction equipment such as a truck for hire or purchase for your construction company. You will need motor graders, crawler excavators, road rollers, loaders, and cranes for your venture. An asphalt mixer is also essential for mixing mineral aggregates, fillers, sand before heating it to make the material for your road construction. Here are the types of bitumen you can make with the mixer.

Cutback Bitumen

Bitumen will often be heated to decrease its viscosity. With cutback bitumen, however, the viscosity of the material is reduced using liquid binders. This decreases the environmental pollution arising from the byproduct of heating bitumen. The solvent used for reduction will evaporate, leaving the asphalt to bind with the aggregate on your road. Cutback bitumen is generally used for road construction and maintenance in cold climates. It comes in rapid, medium and slow curing variants.

Bitumen Emulsion

This is a liquid containing bitumen divided in an aqueous solution and stabilized using suitable materials. The bitumen composition of the product is about 60% with the remaining being water. Once applied on your roads, the bitumen emulsion will break down, causing the release of water when the mix starts setting. The time needed for the setting of the material depends on your bitumen grade. Medium setting bitumen emulsion is used for patchworks and premix tasks while slow-setting emulsions are preferred for constructions in the rainy season. Rapid setting emulsions are the leading choice for surface dressing.

Bituminous Primers

In this bituminous variant, the distillate oil is absorbed by your road’s surface. The absorption of the product is dependent on the porosity of the road. Bituminous primers are used for roads with a base course made of water-bound macadam and stabilized surfaces. They are usually prepared on your construction site by mixing petroleum distillate and penetration bitumen.

Modified Bitumen

Team of Workers making and constructing asphalt road construction with steamroller

Certain additives can be used in bituminous products to improve specific properties. These are known as bitumen modifiers and the resultant product called modified bitumen. The leading variants of modified bitumen are crumb rubber modified bitumen and polymer bitumen. These are used on the wearing course of a road’s construction in extreme climates. Their performance for your road depends on the adherence to strict temperature controls during their laying. Modified bitumen has a higher deformation, temperature, fatigue, adhesion, and crack resistance.

Repeat clients and referrals are essential for the survival of your company in today’s cutthroat competition. Without the right bitumen from the above, the roads you make will be below par and only paint you as a shoddy contractor. It is thus essential to invest in the best-quality mixer for your company to guarantee the highest returns.

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