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PERFORMANCE EVALUATION OF SULFUR-EXTENDED ASPHALT PAVEMENTS -- Laboratory Evaluation

Research/Reference: useful for researchers doing further work in the pavement area as well as those developing improved testing and design procedures. Includes documents of historical value.

Primary Topic: Flexible Pavement

Description: In 1987 the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) completed a field study to compare the performance of sulfur-extended asphalt (SEA) pavements to conventional asphalt control (AC) pavements. A representative set of pavements was chosen to provide a comprehensive evaluation of the effects of sulfur on pavement performance. The primary conclusion was that there was no difference in overall performance between the SEA and AC sections. This field study is documented in FHWA Report DP54-01, Federal Highway Administration, Washington DC, 1987. It is entitled "Performance Evaluation of Sulfur-Extended Asphalt Pavements - Field Survey and Assessment."

The laboratory study documented in the accompanying report complements the field study. Cores were obtained from many of the pavements and tested (1) to verify that the SEA and AC sections were similar in thickness and mixture composition, except for sulfur content, (2) to predict whether the pavement performances of the SEA and AC sections will remain similar, and (3) to investigate individual pavements where the performances of the two sections were not equal. In general, the laboratory test results supported the results of the field study. Overall, sulfur did not increase or decrease most test properties, and often it had no effect on a given test property of a mixture. Sulfur did decrease the resistance to moisture susceptibility in the laboratory. There were also minor trends indicating that with some mixtures, sulfur may reduce the susceptibility to rutting and increased the susceptibility to fatigue cracking. This report also presents the results of several tasks where SEA binders and mixtures prepared in the laboratory were evaluated.

FHWA Publication Number: FHWA-RD-90-110

Publication Year: 1990

Document Links: PDF (file size: 18.6 mb)

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Updated: 07/26/2011
 

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United States Department of Transportation - Federal Highway Administration