This award is to support a cooperative research project between Mary Ann Aglan, President and Technical Director, Technology Resources Inc., Auburn, Alabama and Dr. Ayman Othman, Department of Civil Engineering, South Valley University, Aswan, Egypt. Previous research has shown the potential improvement in the hot temperature properties of asphalt concrete mixtures by using polymer modifiers, when tested at moderate temperatures up to 85 degree F. The PIs will focus on the performance of modified asphalt concrete mixtures using the temperature gradient in hot areas such as Upper Egypt and the southern United States, where temperatures exceed 120 degree F. Novel polymers with different functionalized groups will be used as modifiers to produce asphaltic pavements with superior high temperature properties. The performance of the modified asphalt concrete mixtures will be evaluated. The effect of polymer type and dosage on the pavement performance following high temperature aging will be studied. Two different polymer modifiers will be used and compared with a control mixture to study their effect on the high temperature properties of a soft inexpensive asphalt binder. Mixtures containing Pliolite and Wingflex modifiers will be compared. The polymer modifiers will be supplied by a U.S. company, Goodyear Chemical. A lifetime cost analysis under local market conditions will be performed in order to ascertain the economic advantage of the use of polymer-modified asphalt.
Scope: The cost of highways represents a considerable portion of federal and state budgets, due to the high initial cost of constructing asphaltic paved roads and of maintaining them. High temperature exposure of asphaltic paved roads in hot climates causes rutting and sever wear problems. A technical challenge is in formulating paving mixtures that withstand this high temperature exposure, in addition to the lack of constitutive relationships between the durability of these paving mixtures and their compositions and the environmental conditions. The research performed using local materials under local climatic conditions will further the confidence of officials to use such advanced materials in practice. The results of the laboratory tests, theoretical analysis using constitutive equations, and cost analysis will be presented at a seminar to be held in Aswan, Egypt for individuals from academia, government and private industry involved in the construction and maintenance of the roadway system. The technology developed will also be disseminated through publications in both countries. One graduate student in Egypt and one in the United States will be involved in this project and will benefit from training in this area. The developed methodology can be applied not only to hot climates but also to other climates such as cold regions using the proper polymer modifiers. This project is being supported under the US-Egypt Joint Fund Program, which provides grants to scientists and engineers in both countries to carry out these cooperative activities.