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Research Equipment

The Laboratory is equipped with state-of-the-art equipment for a broad range of asphalt testing.
Asphalt Mixture Performance Tester (AMPT): The AMPT is a computer–controlled hydraulic testing machine that can subject a compacted asphalt mixture specimen to cyclic loading over a range of temperatures and frequencies. The device evaluates asphalt mixture properties to assess potential performance. Transportation agencies can use the AMPT to develop inputs for the structural design of flexible pavements and to obtain information helpful in monitoring mixes and performing quality assurance. The AMPT is also known as the Simple Performance Tester (SPT).
Asphalt Pavement Analyzer (APA): The APA is used to determine the rutting susceptibility of hot mix asphalt (HMA) mixtures. This works by simulating traffic loads over asphalt samples. The test is conducted at elevated temperatures and can even be performed under water to evaluate how water affects the rutting susceptibility of the mix. The APA can also be used to test the resistance of asphalt mixtures to failure by fatigue.
Asphalt Vibratory Compactor (AVC): The AVC is used to produce prismatic samples used in test rutting in the APA and fatigue in the APA and axial testing system.
Axial Testing System: The axial testing system has multiple uses in asphalt research. It is equipped with multiple testing heads to test indirect tensile strength (ITS) and fatigue strength. The ITS test set up is used to determine the moisture susceptibility and low temperature properties of HMA. The fatigue set-up is used to perform flexural beam testing to determine the fatigue properties of mixtures. The test chamber of the axial testing system is also temperature controlled and can run tests at low pavement temperatures
(e.g., -12°C), normal temperatures (e.g., 25°C), or high temperatures (e.g., 76°C).
Bending Beam Rheometer (BBR): The BBR is used to determine the stiffness properties of asphalt binder at low temperatures (e.g. -12°C). This piece of equipment is also used in the performance grading of asphalt binders.
CoreLok: The CoreLok is used primarily to determine the bulk specific gravity of asphalt specimens having an interconnected void structure. It can also be used to determine the maximum specific gravity and permeability of asphalt mixtures. As well, the specific gravity of fine and coarse aggregates can be measured using the CorkLok.
Direct Tension Tester: The DDT is used to determine the facture characteristics of asphalt binders at low temperatures.
Dynamic Shear Rheometer (DSR): The DSR is used to determine the rutting and fatigue properties of asphalt binder. This piece of equipment is used to grade asphalt binders according to the performance grading (PG) scale.
Forced Convection Oven:
Gel Permeation Chromotograph (GPC): The GPC is used to characterize asphalt binders on a molecular scale.
Ignition Oven : The ignition oven is used to determine the asphalt binder content of asphalt samples.
Marshall Hammer : The Marshall hammer is used to compact specimens used for Marshall mix designs and moisture susceptibility testing.
Marshall Stability Machine: The Marshall stability machine is used to measure the stability and indirect tensile strength of asphalt samples.
Pressure Aging Vessel (PAV): The PAV simulates the long term aging (approximately 10 years) of asphalt binders by means of high pressure (2.1 MPa) and high temperature (100°C). This piece of equipment is required for the performance grading of asphalt binders.
Rolling Thin Film Oven (RTFO): The RTFO is used to simulate the aging of asphalt binder that results from oxidation at the asphalt plant. This piece of equipment is also used in the performance grading of asphalt binders.
Rotational Viscometer: The viscometer is used to measure the viscosity of asphalt binders at 135°C.
Superpave Gyratory Compactor (SGC): The SGC is used to compact samples for use in Superpave mix designs, ITS, and APA testing.



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