Nanoclay-modified asphalt materials: Preparation and characterization

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The objective of this study is to review existing literature in the area of nano-modification of asphalt and proceed to apply nano-materials to asphalt to improve the performance. This study integrates literature review, preparation, and characterization of nano-modified asphalt materials. In the experimental testing montmorillonite, nanoclay at 2% and 4% by weight of asphalt was blended in asphalt binder at a high temperature to exfoliate the nanoclay within the asphalt. The asphalt binder was then characterized using the Superpave™ rotational viscosity, dynamic shear modulus, and direct tension test. The rotational viscosity results indicate that the addition of the two types of nanoclay, Nanoclay A and Nanoclay B, increased the rotational viscosity by an average of 41% and 112%, respectively, across test temperatures 80, 100, 130, 135, 150 and 175 °C. It was found that the dynamic shear complex modulus (G*) value increases significantly across a range of testing temperatures (from 13 to 70 °C) and loading frequencies (0.01-25 Hz). With 2% Nanoclay A reinforcement in the asphalt binder, the complex shear moduli generally increased by 66% while the 4% Nanoclay A reinforcement in the asphalt binder generally increased the shear complex moduli by 125%. The 2% and 4% Nanoclay B increased the shear complex moduli by 184% and 196%, respectively. In terms of direct tension strength, the use of Nanoclay A and Nanoclay B reduced the strain failure rate of the original binder while the secant or direct tension moduli showed increase with the addition of the nanoclays. In furtherance of this research, nanoclay-modified asphalt is being tested at percentages higher than 4% to underscore the fact that nanoclays may have the potential to reduce rutting and cracking. © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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Construction and Building Materials