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1887
Volume 68, Issue 3
  • ISSN: 2056-5135

Abstract

Bituminous binders, often referred to as asphalt, play a pivotal role in the construction and maintenance of flexible pavements. As the demand for durable and sustainable infrastructure continues to rise, a thorough understanding of the physical and rheological properties of bituminous binders becomes imperative. This manuscript presents a comprehensive review of various mechanical tests used to assess bituminous binder properties, including penetration (Pen), softening point (SP), penetration ratio (PR), penetration index (PI), ductility tests and absolute and kinematic viscosities. These mechanical tests serve as fundamental tools for evaluating binder consistency, hardness, ductility and flow behaviour. SP and Pen measurements are employed to grade bituminous binders based on their response to temperature. Additionally, PR and PI provide valuable insights into binder performance under varying environmental conditions. Ductility tests offer critical information about a binder’s ability to elongate without breaking, a crucial factor in withstanding the stresses imposed by traffic. In parallel, the manuscript underscores the significance of understanding the rheological properties of bituminous binders. Dynamic shear rheometry (DSR) is introduced as a method for characterising complex modulus (G*), fail temperature and phase angle (δ) behaviour under different temperature and loading conditions. These tests are well established in the USA based on Strategic Highway Research Program (SHRP) specifications. Their relevance in the Indian context is discussed, with recent inclusion of rheological parameters in the Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) specification. The manuscript highlights the role of instrumental analysis techniques, including Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) and scanning electron microscopy (SEM), in uncovering the molecular and microstructural aspects of bituminous binders. FTIR aids in identifying functional groups within the binder, elucidating chemical composition and aging effects, while NMR provides insights into molecular mobility and heterogeneity. SEM is instrumental in revealing the binder’s microstructure and its interaction with aggregates. In conclusion, this manuscript offers a comprehensive analysis of both mechanical and rheological testing, emphasising their significance in evaluating bituminous binder properties. It also stresses the growing importance of instrumental analysis techniques, particularly for chemically modified bitumen. The primary aim is to provide a valuable resource for researchers, engineers and practitioners in the field of civil engineering and infrastructure development.

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2023-11-30
2024-07-14
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