Georg Foster Fellowship

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Integrating the benefits of recycling approach and warm mix asphalt technology: New insights toward accelerating the diffusion phenomenon between new and aged bitumen

The use of recycled materials and by-products coupled with lowering the consumed energy in asphalt production is a potential approach towards environmentally friendlier road pavements. Despite the substantial numbers of research activities and efforts, the lack of deep and broad knowledge on the potential re-activation of the binder in recycled asphalt pavement (RAP) particles in warm mix asphalt (WMA) at reduced mixing temperatures made concerns about the future of this beneficial approach. Similarly, although the international practices reported shreds of promises over the use of recycled WMA, Iran's road community still uses the conventional methods, resulting in major environmental, health-related, and economic concerns. To this end, and to provide an authentic attitude for asphalt road community and researchers, this proposal was drawn for assessing the diffusion phenomenon and Physico-chemical interaction between virgin and RAP binders in recycled WMA mixes. Multiphysics simulation was chosen to be employed as the principal approach followed by micromechanical modeling to approximate the physico-chemical interaction and rheological characteristics of recycled WMA mixtures. This research will contribute to the road community by providing a finite element framework for approximating the level of inter-diffusion between virgin and aged asphalt binders. The results will be applicable in (i) explaining the principal phenomena in the recycling process and providing solutions to those of consequences in a more sufficient way, (ii) better understanding the major requirements of next generations of asphalt recycling, (iii) discussing the potentials and the requirements of foam WMA technology in the way of becoming a solution to the challenges of road recycling, and (iv) attracting Iran's road community to employ this technology by providing sustainable pavements with increased recycling rate.

Contact: Dr. Motevalizadeh