Moisture sensitivity in asphalt concrete mixtures


Mary Stroup-Gardiner, Dave Newcomb, Benita Crow, William Kussman, Dan Wegman

November 1995

Report no. Mn/DOT 1996-04


Asphalt, Concrete

The research performed for this report was intended to recommend alternative mix design procedures and parameters for evaluation of asphalt mixture sensitivity, with more of an emphasis on volumetric relationships. Three Mn/DOT projects were selected to represent the following durability issues: 1) debonding of asphalt from aggregate, 2) cohesion problems, and 3) mix design problems. Materials were obtained from these construction projects and evaluated in the laboratory. Gradations were varied from the project specifications so that mixtures with more and less asphalt were evaluated along with the project mixture. Testing included the temperature susceptibility and moisture sensitivity of the mixtures, in addition to the net adsorption test on the aggregates.

The results suggested means for identifying moisture sensitivity mechanisms in mixtures during the mixture design phase, although these need to be confirmed through more extensive investigation. Aggregate mineralogy, gradation, and mixture proportioning can all play a role in improving the durability characteristics of asphalt mixtures. Recommendations are made for continued research and implementation of an improved approach to asphalt mixture design.

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