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KUCHING: Rubberised roads will only be constructed if it is proven feasible technically

and financially, says Works Minister Fadillah Yusof.

We have done three pilot projects at three sites in Selangor and Negeri Sembilan (1km
each) and right now these roads are still under the evaluation process.

He said the fourth pilot project, using the same method, would soon be implemented in

Fadillah said if proven good, technically and financially, such roads would be
implemented in the on-going Pan Borneo Highway project.

According to Fadillah, construction of a rubberised road would be slightly more

expensive than building a conventional one, but the maintenance cost would be much
cheaper in the long run.

The minister said this after attending a special session with participants of Jom Masuk
Universiti (JMU) 2017, organised by Halaqah Kemajuan Muslim Sarawak (Hikam) here

He was asked to comment on a statement by Plantation Industries and Commodities

Minister Mah Siew Keong yesterday that the government would be initiating work to
construct rubberised roads in some parts of the country by this year.

This will also increase demand for rubber and push up its price.

Fadillah said normally the evaluation process would take two years but he had given a
period of one year to evaluate by looking into the costing and technical parts.

More importantly, attention will be given to the outcome in terms of the strength of the
new mixture of cup lump rubber and bitumen so that it will be more lasting compared
with the conventional way of tarring roads.

The final results will be available within this year. The three pilot projects are showing
some positive indications that this will be one of the options.
Malaysia is making inroads in efforts to construct rubberised roads in the country, with the first full
rubberised road project in the country can be expected in the first-quarter of 2018 (1Q18).

Works Minister Datuk Seri Fadillah Yusof said the Public Works Department is now planning for
more physical feasibility study to construct roads using Cup Lump Modified Asphalt (CMA), in
addition to the current three pilot projects.

Fadillah told The Malaysian Reserve (TMR) that the pilot projects are expected to have a positive
outcome, with the full report expected to be ready by January next year.
We were proven right with very successful lab tests, but we want to match it with physical
implementation on the ground.

Currently, we have three pilot testing sites and we are planning to implement CMA testing in Kota
Baru (Kelantan) and Segamat (Johor), Fadillah said at the Parliament lobby yesterday, adding
that the project in Segamat would be the longest test to-date at a length of 20km.

According to him, normally the evaluation process would take about two years but he has given a
one-year period to complete the test.

The study will also include costing and technical parts, and importantly, the outcome of the new
mixture of cup lump rubber and bitumens strength so that it will last longer than the conventional

So far, the testing produces positive results, but it needs some fine-tuning in the area of
temperature...if its too hot, the elasticity of CMA gets affected.

The CMA that we are constructing in Segamat is the finer version of the existing ones, Fadillah
explained. In the medium term, Fadillah said the ministry will identify manufacturers that can
produce CMA and meet specific standards, while providing training for contractors to comply with
all necessary processes.

He added that the cost of road construction using the CMA method is higher at RM53 per sq m,
compared to RM29 per sq m via the conventional method.

Although the construction cost is higher, the maintenance cost of CMA roads is far lower than
conventional roads.

In the longer term, CMA road construction could be more economic given that life cycle cost of
the roads would be cheaper, said the minister.

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia will begin construction of rubberised roads nationwide this year, in a
bid to boost domestic consumption of rubber, said the Plantation Industries and Commodities
Ministry today.
Its minister, Datuk Seri Mah Siew Keong, said the move would help shore up the commodity,
which has been battered by falling prices.
"We need to support our smallholders, who might otherwise shift away from natural rubber due to
weak prices," he told a press conference after the Gerakan Chinese New Year open house at
Menara PGRM here today.
Mah revealed that his ministry has been directed to build rubberised roads within the next few
months by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak, who is concerned over the livelihoods of the
rakyat, particularly, smallholders.
"There are about 1.2 million smallholders in the country (550,00 smallholders in the palm oil
industry, 440,000 in the rubber industry and 60,000 in the pepper industry).
"As per the prime minister's directive, we will be working hand-in-hand with the International
Trade and Industry Ministry to ensure good prices and sustainable demand for palm oil and
rubber, among others.
"We understand that it is an expensive exercise for the ministry to continue giving subsidies,
hence we must increase the demand for rubber," he added.
Although the initial cost of building the rubberised roads may be 16 per cent higher than normal
roads, Mah said maintenance costs in the long run would be cheaper.
Besides that, he said rubberised roads are more durable and could bear heavier loads.
"We have been doing research on rubberised roads over the last three years and so far, things
are good.
(The Prime Minister) said we must build the rubberised roads in small towns and certain parts of
(major) highways. The main purpose is to ensure that our 440,000 rubber smallholders have
sustainable demand
"The roads will be made using rubber cup lumps, or naturally-coagulated latex, which will be
processed into bituminous cup lumps and then mixed into asphalt.
"However, we have yet to identify the exact stretches of roads to be upgraded, and we are
currently looking into that," he added.
In 2015, Reuters reported that there was a possibility that the use or rubber in road building may
increase by 15 or 20 per cent, if the project proves successful.

Meanwhile, when talking to journalists, Rosnah said there are three pioneer projects of rubber in
road asphalt paving in this country namely in Tampin, Negri Sembilan; Baling, Kedah and
Temerloh, Pahang, while similar projects are planned in Kelantan and Segamat, Johor.
"It (rubber asphalt paving) is more costly to construct compared to conventional road paving, but
the cost effective comes from the low maintenance the road needed, we are conducting a study
especially in terms of cost and safety and expect to complete the study by year end," she said.
Freeway noise in the United States of America (USA) has been greatly alleviated by
employing 25 mm open graded Asphalt-Rubber Friction Course (ARFC). The use of asphalt
rubber (AR) pavements in the USA has been successful in several states. AR binder used in
the hot mix asphalt is a mixture of 80 percent hot asphalt (bitumen), and 20 percent ground
scrap tyre crumb rubber by weight of asphalt. The resultant AR binder mixture is added hot
to a hot open graded mineral aggregate to produce ARFC mixture as the final wearing
course of the pavement structure. Typically, the ARFC mixes contain 9 to 10 percent AR
binder and their use has been primarily focused on reducing thermal and reflective cracking,
and highway noise. This paper discusses the benefits of ARFC as a pavement noise
mitigation strategy. The paper reviews the experience in the USA with using AR pavements
to reduce the pavement noise by 3-12 decibels (dB). In addition, sound intensity
measurements taken close to the tyre/pavement interface have shown that ARFC surfaces
are effective in reducing noise by 4 to 6 dB compared with traditional dense graded asphalt
concrete, and by 6 to 12 dB compared to cement concrete surfaces. In addition, AR has
been successfully utilized in the mitigation of daily thermal variances in Portland Cement
Concrete pavements, improved skid resistance, reduced roughness, and reduction of
emission rates of tyre wear per km driven.

7 SEPTEMBER 1948: A mile-long stretch of Exchange Street in Akron,

Ohio, is the first in the United States to be paved with a rubber-asphalt
Rubber was everywhere in postwar Akron. As the home of B.F. Goodrich,
Goodyear, Firestone and General Tire, Akron called itself the Rubber
Capital of the World, and the fortunes of the city were tied to the synthetic-
rubber industry.
As early as the 1840s, scientists added natural rubber to pavement (.pdf) to
create surfaces that resisted cracks and better repelled water. Goodyear
President Paul Litchfield was so impressed by the rubberized roadways hed
seen on a visit to the Netherlands that he donated synthetic rubber for a
real-world test of rubber roads in Akron, the first such test on U.S. soil.
The rubberized asphalt was put down along a stretch of West Exchange
Street, a main Akron thoroughfare. The rubber road opened to the public Sept.
7, 1948, complete with a sign at its terminus that read, Here ends the first
rubber street in America.
In reality, the road surface only contained between 5 and 7 percent rubber.
The rest, as always, was asphalt.
Rubber companies immediately jumped on the rubber-road bandwagon,
with dry-powder or latex rubber additives sold under brand names such as
Rub-R-Road and Pliopave. Roads from Ohio to Virginia got the rubber
treatment at an added cost of $7.25 per cubic mile (about $60 in todays
Engineers eventually questioned the benefits of rubberized roads. At the
time, pure asphalt was cheap, rubberized asphalt was more expensive, and
studies didnt show any clear advantages of roads paved with rubber.
West Exchange Street was torn up and repaved in 1959.
It was only a few years later, in 1965, that an engineer for the city of
Phoenix, Arizona, named Charlie McDonald found a way to blend shredded
crumb rubber from waste tires into asphalt. With an abundant supply of
waste tires, rubber roads once again became popular, especially in warm
climates where rubberized asphalt is more resistant to reflective and
thermal cracking.
Rubberized asphalt remains most popular in Arizona, where rubberized
Phoenix-area roads are touted as quiet roads that can reduce the decibel
level of road noise up to 12 percent, sometimes negating the need for sound
While West Exchange Street is now conventional asphalt, Akrons rubber
road lives on nearby in a more-modern incarnation. The pedestrian
walkway along the Ohio & Erie Canal (shown above) is made of crumb
rubber and runs beneath the Exchange Street overpass.

April 21, 2014

Americans generate nearly 300 million scrap tires every year, according to the Environmental
Protection Agency (EPA). Historically, these worn tires often end up in landfills or, when illegally
dumped, become breeding grounds for disease-carrying mosquitoes and rodents. They also
pose a potential fire hazard.

In recent years, however, interest has been growing in finding new, beneficial and
environmentally friendly uses for discarded tires.

Magdy Abdelrahman, for example, an associate professor of civil and environmental engineering
at North Dakota State University, is working on ways to turn old tires into new and improved

The National Science Foundation (NSF)-funded scientist is experimenting with "crumb" rubber--
ground up tires of different sized particles--and other components to improve the rubberized road
materials that a number of states already are using to enhance aging asphalt.

"It's very durable," he says. "We mix it with different materials and in different percentages, and
in different conditions, to find the best ways to add rubber to asphalt."

Asphalt rubber is the largest single market for ground rubber, consuming an estimated 220
million pounds, or approximately 12 million tires, according to the EPA. California and Arizona
use the most asphalt rubber in highway construction, followed by Florida, the EPA says. Other
states that are using asphalt rubber, or are studying its potential, include Texas, Nebraska, South
Carolina, New York and New Mexico, according to the agency.

Ground tire rubber, when blended with asphalt, produces longer lasting road surfaces, and can
lower road noise and the need for road maintenance.

Moreover, "this project will have a broad impact because solid waste is problematic throughout
the world," Abelrahman says. "Asphalt applications have the potential to contribute to the solution
of the growing solid waste problem provided that engineering and environmental concerns are
addressed. Asphalt binders represent an area that can improve pavement performance."

Abdelrahman's research involves studying interactions of crumb rubber with specific additives to
evaluate and characterize the physical and chemical properties of the compounds. He also is
trying to determine whether certain conditions, such as bad weather, will cause chemical
releases from the recycled materials--from polymers, for example--and the potential impact on
soil and groundwater.

"We want to assess the environmental impact of adding components to the mixing of crumb
rubber and asphalt, for example, is it going to leach out in the rain?" he says. "Traditional, that is,
normal, asphalt-rubber materials will not cause harm to the soil or the ground water. But some
additives may.

"We already know that the technology [rubberized roads] is proven to work, but we want to make
it work much, much better," he adds. "We are trying to find the scientific and engineering aspects
to make it better and, at the same time, be sure it is environmentally friendly."

Abdelrahman is conducting his work with an NSF Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER)
award, which he received in 2009. The award supports junior faculty who exemplify the role of
teacher-scholars through outstanding research, excellent education, and the integration of
education and research within the context of the mission of their organization. NSF is funding his
work with about $400,000 over five years.

The grant's educational component is strongly tied to the research, through developing a
graduate/senior course on recycled material applications with significant scientific components,
and through faculty-professional focus meetings to exchange experiences in the area of recycled

He also plans to develop activities to recruit, train, and mentor students in the undergraduate and
graduate programs, with the goal of preparing them for careers in recycled materials.

"We want to get the undergraduates involved in research activities and show them the
technology we have developed," he says.

Furthermore, community outreach activities "will raise the awareness of K-12 students to the
environmental issues facing the local as well as the global community regarding solid waste
management," he says. "We will hold classes, seminars, even with kids in elementary school and
show them: let's recycle some material.
"It is really important for them to understand that if we keep using new materials, that our
grandchildren won't have anything left," he adds. "We're trying to get them to think about what
will be available to the next generation in the way of resources if we cannot, or do not, use
recycled materials. The goal is to educate high school, middle school and elementary school
children, and show them that this is what needs to be done."

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Adding rubber to asphalt produces a road surface tougher and more durable than plain asphalt, but
comes at a higher cost. Previous governments subsidised prices of rubber and rice in order to boost
rural incomes and so help maintain political support in the countryside. The unintended effects of
the scheme were to promote higher rubber production across the region and to support already
high prices. As the Chinese economy has slowed, demand has failed to keep up causing a dramatic
drop in global prices. Natural rubber, which trades in Tokyo, has fallen more than 30 per cent since
December, although improving US economic data have given the market a recent bounce. The
previous administration announced in May plans to offload some of its 220,000 tonnes of rubber,
more than 1.5 per cent of annual global production. However, analysts say that lobbying from
farmers has delayed such a selldown, prompting the government to look to new and creative ways
to boost domestic demand instead.

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However, rubber analysts are doubtful that the Thai government will have much luck in reversing
the current price trend, especially as new production comes online in Vietnam, Indonesia and other
neighbouring countries. The stockpile is quite large and it is unlikely that this project will deplete it
all, said Prachaya Jumpasut, managing director at The Rubber Economist, a consultancy. To us the
problem will not be solved by just using a part of the stockpile in Thailand. Global demand has to
pick up and supply from other countries has to slow down as well. And though Thai roads may be
repaved with good intentions, there is another snag in the plan: Thailand has the wrong kind of
rubber. Michael Coleman, managing director at RCMA Asset Management, says that the government
stockpile of dry rubber is absolutely useless for road building. Its a nice sound bite, but its
impractical. The only thing that shifts large amounts of rubber is truck and bus tyres, says Mr
Coleman. Theres not much that can be done in the short term.

If you are driven to distraction by the noisy traffic outside your house, this could be the road to a good nights
Recycled car tyres could soon be used to surface roads across the country after a pioneering trial found they
made roads quieter.
One of the busiest roads in Scotland was resurfaced last year with the asphalt, containing shredded rubber from
old tyres.
Tests were performed on grip and skid resistance, with engineers reporting that the rubber road, on a stretch of
dual carriageway between Perth and Dundee, resulted in a quieter drive.
The surface is also more environmentally friendly. Since 2006, EU rules have banned the disposal of tyres in
landfill sites, leaving about 480,000 tonnes of recyclable shredded rubber each year.
Experts claim the road requires less maintenance and still allows for drainage, while tyre recyclers claim the
technique will also save money because the new material is thinner than standard roads.
Rubber roads were first built in the 1960s in the US, where today there are 20,000 miles of road made of recycled
Rubber roads are also popular in China, Brazil, Spain and Germany.