Investigation & Evaluation of Ground Tire Rubber in Hot Mix Asphalt
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Investigation & Evaluation of Ground Tire Rubber in Hot Mix Asphalt

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      The purpose of this study, which is published in five volumes, was to identify and verify using all available state-of-the-art sources, how ground tire rubber can be utilized in asphalt concrete mixtures for pavement construction meeting standard quality performance related specifications. The project was initiated by the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT). This report includes results from the two major processes for incorporating ambient ground, granulated tire rubber in hot mix asphalt (HMA): (a) The wet process, called asphalt-rubber, in which 18-26% tire rubber is reacted with asphalt at elevated temperatures (375-425 deg F) for one to two hours to produce a material suitable for use as a binder in HMA construction; and (b) The dry process, called rubber-modified mixes (currently marketed under the tradename PlusRide), in which rubber amounting to about 3 to 5% of the aggregate weight is added to the aggregate before the asphalt is introduced and mixing occurs. Based on this research, the authors reached the following conclusions: (1) Ambient ground, granulated tire rubber can be used in Florida friction course mixes with a minimum effect on the gradations of current surface mixtures and a probable increase in service life. However, the cost will be increased by about 10%. (2) Current specifications can be modified to account for the addition of small quantities of granulated tire rubber with a minimum of difficulty. Addition of large quantities of rubber would require major changes in the materials used in dense graded friction courses and are not recommended at this time. (3) A series of carefully designed demonstration projects should be constructed and evaluated before widespread incorporation of rubber in surface mixes. This trial usage will permit the FDOT to refine the suggestions included in this report to more closely match up with Florida conditions. (4) The use of scrap tire rubber in the recommended quantities will only use about 10% of the scrap tires produced annually in the state. (5) The disposal of all the tires produced annually require that a comprehensive waste disposal program be developed that includes use of scrap tires not only in HMA but also in a series of other technologies that use rubber as a fuel and as a raw material for production of other rubber products.
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