Most bituminous adhesives or binders that are used for pavement materials are derived primarily from fossil fuels. With petroleum oil reserves becoming depleted and the drive to establish a bio-based economy, there is a push to produce binders from alternative sources, particularly from biorenewable resources. However, until now, no research has studied the applicability of utilizing bio-oils as a bitumen replacement (100% replacement) in the pavement industry.
The main objective of this research was to test various properties of bio-oils in order to determine the applicability of using bio-oils as binders in the pavement industry.
The overall conclusions about the applicability of using bio-oils as bio-binders in the pavement industry can be summarized as follows:
- Bio-oils cannot be used as bio-binders/pavement materials without any heat pre-treatment/upgrading procedure.
- Current testing standards and specifications, especially Superpave procedures, should be modified to comply with the properties of bio-binders.
- The temperature range of the viscous behavior for bio-oils may be lower than that of bitumen binders by about 30°–40° C.
- The rheological properties of the unmodified bio-binders vary in comparison to bitumen binders, but the rheological properties of these modified bio-binders change significantly upon adding polymer modifiers.
- The high-temperature performance grade for the developed bio-binders may not vary significantly from that of the bitumen binders, but the low-temperature performance grade may vary significantly.
IHRB Project TR-594/InTrans Project 08-133
Iowa Highway Research Board;Iowa Department of Transportation; Iowa Energy Center
Mohamed Metwally, Mohamed Abdel Raouf and Williams, R. Christopher, "Development of Non-Petroleum Based Binders for Use in Flexible Pavements" (2010). InTrans Project Reports. 17.