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Upadhyay Chairman, National Highway Authority of India G-5 & 6, Sector-10 Dwarka, New Delhi – 110 075 Subject: Why are we burying sugar worth crores of rupees under our national highways? Dear Sir: The question in the subject is to draw your immediate personal attention and intervention. The question is legitimate except that we are burying road paving bitumen worth crores and crores of rupees under our national highways rather than sugar. Incidentally, both sugar and bitumen cost about the same: Rs. 30-35 per kg. The “burial” of bitumen which is our country’s “dharovar” (property) is being done indiscriminately on some of our highways, which are being six-laned from the existing four lanes. Existing four lanes of bituminous pavement get buried while constructing vehicle under passes, public under passes, and flyovers. In such cases, the existing bituminous pavement usually consisting of dense bituminous macadam (DBM) and bituminous concrete (BC) can be milled off and the reclaimed asphalt pavement (RAP) transported to hot mix plant for recycling. Asphalt pavement is 100% recyclable. Here is an example. An existing four-lane national highway with a total length of 120 km is to be made a six-laned highway. Due to construction of under passes and flyovers a total of about 30 km of the existing four lanes of bituminous pavement will get buried if not reclaimed and recycled. The total tonnage of bitumen, which will be buried, is estimated to be about 7,000 tons which has a value of more than 22 crore rupees. The total tonnage of aggregate in the bituminous pavement, which will also get buried, is estimated to be about 165,000 tons which has a value of over 6 crore rupees. So we will have a gross savings of over 28 crore rupees. The estimated cost of cold milling and transport of RAP to hot mix plant for recycling is about 8 crores. Therefore, a net savings of rupees 20 crores can be realized on this six-laning project if hot mix recycling is implemented by the NHAI. There are many projects of this nature which can save us hundreds of crores. I have verified that the one-time cost of modifying an asphalt batch plant to do hot mix recycling in India is only 20 lakhs rupees. Besides huge savings in cost and earning carbon credits, we also have to obtain less virgin aggregate from our quarries and also we have to import less crude oil to produce the paving bitumen. You will probably encounter the following arguments as to why NHAI should not mandate hot recycling of asphalt pavements. My response is given in parenthesis.
1. It is a new technology. We cannot implement it because we do not have the necessary experience. [Hot recycling of asphalt pavements has become a standard, proven practice in many countries of the world for the last 30 years. It is not a US technology but a global technology. It is not a “rocket science”; we can implement it right away on major NH projects without waiting for that “experience” or “experimental field trials” just like NHAI has commendably implemented the use of robust stone matrix asphalt (SMA) mix recently on national highways without any problem.] 2. Recycled hot asphalt mix may be inferior in performance to 100% virgin asphalt mix. [Numerous field studies in the developed countries have shown time and again that the performance of hot recycled asphalt mix is equal to or better than 100% virgin mix. This is because the specification requirements are generally the same for both.] 3. We are already recycling the milled RAP in the granular sub base (GSB) and/or wet mix macadam (WMM) on some national highway projects. [Use of RAP in GSB or WMM cannot be called recycling; it is still a wasteful burial. Moreover, inclusion of discrete particles of RAP in GSB is detrimental to its function as drainage layer in the pavement. Inclusion of discrete sub rounded particles of RAP in WMM interferes with the interlocking characteristic of the WMM. Besides, the cost of bitumen is hardly realized from this burial.] 4. We do not have an Indian Roads Congress (IRC) specification for hot asphalt recycling. [As a member of the IRC Flexible Pavement Committee, last year I submitted two draft specifications to IRC for adoption to facilitate hot recycling. One specification is for cold milling and the other for hot mix recycling. NHAI can use these two draft standards right now without waiting for IRC’s final approval because time is of essence. These two draft standards are attached.] 5. NHAI engineers, contractors and consultants are not trained in hot mix recycling. [I had the privilege of developing detailed, easy to understand, guidelines for recycling asphalt pavements; the project was funded by the US Federal Highway Administration (FHWA). This manual was used by me and my associate Dr. Rajib Mallick to conduct field workshops throughout the US to train highway engineers of state and local governments, contractors, and consultants. Twelve workshops were conducted by us in different parts of the US to train engineers of all 50 states. This comprehensive manual addresses all issues related to recycling such as construction methods & equipment; materials & mix design; and case histories and QC/QA (quality control/quality assurance). This manual can be downloaded free at the following internet link: http://www.scribd.com/doc/47299513/Pavement-Recycling-Guidelines-forState-and-Local-Governments-Federal-Highway-Administration-PublicationNo-FHWA-SA-98-042-December-1997 However, training of NHAI engineers, contractors, and consultants in hot
mix recycling is still needed. I am based in Jaipur. I offer my voluntary assistance to NHAI for conducting training workshops. Travel, boarding and lodging expenses will have to be borne by NHAI.] It is my considered recommendation that hot mix recycling cannot be implemented in India until the NHAI mandates its use on all major NHAI projects. Such a circular should be issued as soon as possible before we the highway fraternity of India is blamed for squandering our country’s “dharovar” by burying it under our national highways. Just issuing a circular to “encourage” recycling is not enough any more. Recycling should also be allowed in existing contracts with immediate effect. I am sure under your leadership recycling will become a reality very soon. This open letter is being shared with over 1000 highway engineers in India to promote recycling. Please let me know if I can be of any assistance. [My brief introduction is also attached.] Sincerely, Prof. Prithvi Singh Kandhal Jaipur firstname.lastname@example.org Three attachments (A, B, and C). Attachment A BRIEF INTRODUCTION OF PROF. PRITHVI SINGH KANDHAL Prof. Prithvi Singh Kandhal is Associate Director Emeritus of the National Center for Asphalt Technology (NCAT) based at Auburn University, Alabama, U.S.A. NCAT is the largest asphalt (bitumen) road technology center in the world. Prior to joining NCAT in 1988, Kandhal served as Chief Asphalt Engineer of the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation for 17 years. He is the first person born outside North America, who has held the following three very prestigious positions in the asphalt technology area: • • President, Association of Asphalt Paving Technologists (with members from all continents in the world), Chairman, American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) International Committee on Road Paving Standards (responsible for over 200 standards used worldwide), and
Chairman, Transportation Research Board Committee on Asphalt Roads, U.S. National Academy of Sciences Prof. Kandhal has published over 120 technical papers and has co-authored the first 3
ever textbook on asphalt road technology, which is used by more than 25 universities in the U.S. He has traveled across the world to provide training and consulting services in asphalt (bitumen) technology. He has been to China three times to train their highway engineers in building world-class roads. 18/11/2011 Attachment B Kandhal Draft as of 14 April 2011 TENTATIVE GUIDE SPECIFICATION FOR COLD MILLING OF EXISTING ASPHALT PAVEMENT [Notes in italics have been provided throughout the draft to clarify or to give the background for some specification requirements to the reviewer so that unnecessary comments are minimized. These notes in italics shall be deleted from the final draft once the draft specification is approved by the IRC Council.] 1. INTRODUCTION Cold milling of existing asphalt pavement is required (a) to improve the rideability and cross slope of the existing pavement, (b) to lower the finished grade adjacent to existing curb or shoulder prior to resurfacing, and (c) to completely remove the existing asphalt pavement. There was need to develop a specification for cold milling of existing asphalt pavement to accomplish the preceding objectives in India. Such a specification would also encourage reuse of milled, reclaimed asphalt pavement (RAP) material through appropriate recycling processes. Prof. P.S. Kandhal developed this tentative guide specification on 14 April 2011 for consideration by the Flexible Pavement Committee of the Indian Roads congress. 2. SCOPE This specification covers the work of milling an existing asphalt pavement. Cold milling may be necessitated to improve the rideability and cross slope of the existing pavement; to lower the finished grade adjacent to existing curb or shoulder prior to resurfacing; and to completely remove the existing asphalt pavement. The work specified herein also includes the transporting, stockpiling, or otherwise disposing of the removed pavement material. The removed material shall become the property of the Contractor unless otherwise specified. [Note to reviewer: It has been the experience of the developed countries that the government cannot manage RAP stockpiles effectively, which solidify with time. It is best to give the RAP to the contractor who can recycle it later on some paving project. The government still benefits indirectly because the contractor gives a lower price for the project in hand in exchange for the RAP which contains expensive
bitumen.] 3. EQUIPMENT The equipment for this operation shall be a milling machine capable of maintaining a depth of cut and cross slope which shall achieve the results specified herein. The machine shall have a minimum overall length (out to out excluding the conveyor) of 5 m and minimum cutting width of 2 m. The milling machine shall be equipped with automatic grade controls which operate by sensing from one or more skis, wheels, or other type of mechanism moving along the pavement surface and, if required, shall produce a skid resistant surface texture. The sensing device shall be of sufficient design to significantly improve the longitudinal profile of the pavement surface. A smaller milling machine may be used when milling adjacent to existing curb, around utilities, or other areas where it is not practical to use the larger machine. The machine shall be equipped with a means to effectively limit the amount of dust escaping from the removal operations. 4. CONSTRUCTION The existing pavement shall be milled to varying depths in a manner which will restore the pavement surface to a uniform longitudinal profile and cross section as specified on the plans or as directed by the Engineer. The required milling depth at the centreline and at the edge of pavement may vary to obtain the required cross slope. The approximate depths of required milling are shown on the plans for the appropriate typical sections. In areas where the existing roadway does not have the required crown and/or super elevation rate, the milling depths shall vary to provide the desired cross slope and profile. The Contractor may elect to make multiple cuts to achieve the required pavement configuration or depth of cut. The milling machine shall be operated to effectively minimize the amount of dust being emitted from the machine. Prewetting of the pavement may be required. On resurfacing projects, the milling operations shall be limited to an area where the milled area will be covered with a bituminous surface treatment or paving, whichever applicable, within 24 hours after milling has begun, unless otherwise noted on the plans. A positive drainage of the milled surface and adjacent pavement shall be provided as soon as possible. Prior to resurfacing or opening a milled area to traffic, where permitted, the milled surface shall be thoroughly swept with a power broom or other approved equipment to remove, to the greatest extent practicable, fine material and dust particles. This operation shall be conducted in a manner so as to minimize the potential for creation of a traffic hazard and to minimize air pollution. Material removed by the milling machine, and material swept from the pavement,
shall be disposed of in locations approved by the Engineer. If the reclaimed material is suitable for use in a recycled asphalt plant mix, and the Contractor elects to use the material in such fashion, then the height of the stockpiles at the asphalt plant should be limited to prevent moisture build-up or reconsolidation of the material. 5. MILLED SURFACE If the milled surface is to be the final surface of the pavement, it shall have either continuous or intermittent striations or any other pre-approved pattern which will provide an acceptable level of skid resistance. If pavement is to be constructed over the milled surface, it shall have a texture which will provide good bonding. The finished milled surface shall have a reasonably uniform texture and shall be within 6 mm of a true profile grade both in transverse and longitudinal directions, when measured with a 3-m long straightedge. Areas varying from a true surface in excess of the above stated tolerance may be accepted without correction if the Engineer determines that they were caused by a pre-existing condition which could not have reasonably been corrected by the milling operation. Any unsuitable texture or profile, as determined by the Engineer, shall be corrected by the Contractor at no additional compensation. The Engineer may require remilling of any area where a surface delamination causes a non-uniform texture to occur. 6. METHOD OF MEASUREMENT The area over which milling is completed to the desired depth and accepted shall be measured in square meters. 7. BASIS OF PAYMENT The milling of pavement ordered and accepted, measured as noted above, will be paid for at the contract unit price bid which shall be full compensation for the milling of the pavement, the transporting and stockpiling of the removed surplus material, the removal and disposal of pavement markers, the removal of grinding residue and the satisfactory disposal thereof, and the cleaning of the pavement and for all materials, equipment, tools, labour, and incidentals necessary to complete the work. 8. REFERENCES Kandhal, P.S. and R.B. Mallick. Pavement Recycling Guidelines for State and Local Governments. US Federal Highaway Administration Publication No. FHWA-SA-98042, December 1997. [Download Chapter 5 which addresses cold milling in detail at http://www.scribd.com/doc/47299513/Pavement-Recycling-Guidelines-for-State-andLocal-Governments-Federal-Highway-Administration-Publication-No-FHWA-SA98-042-December-1997]
************************************ [Note to reviewers of this specification: The above specification was developed by consulting the specifications of three US states: Alabama, Florida and Pennsylvania, which have widely and successfully used cold milling over a period of several years. The specifications were then drafted considering Indian conditions.] Attachment C Kandhal draft as of 14 April 2011 TENTATIVE GUIDE SPECIFICATION FOR HOT RECYCLED PLANT-MIXED DENSE GRADED BITUMINOUS MIXES [Notes in italics have been provided throughout the draft to clarify or to give the background for some specification requirements to the reviewer so that unnecessary comments are minimized. These notes in italics shall be deleted from the final draft once the draft specification is approved by the IRC Council.] 1. INTRODUCTION Recycling or reuse of existing bituminous materials to produce new bituminous materials results in considerable savings of material, money, and energy besides helping to solve disposal problems. Of the four different types of asphalt recycling methods, hot mix recycling is the process in which reclaimed asphalt pavement (RAP) materials are combined in a hot mix plant with new materials to produce recycled bituminous mixes. The RAP material can be obtained by milling or ripping and crushing existing asphalt pavements. There was a need to develop a generic specification for hot recycled plant-mixed dense graded bituminous mixes suited to Indian conditions so that RAP can be utilized for resurfacing and/or new construction of bituminous pavements. Prof. P.S. Kandhal developed this specification on 14 April 2011 for consideration by the Flexible Pavement Committee (FPC) of the Indian Roads Congress. [Note to reviewer: In absence of this specification no milling is usually done to obtain RAP and go for hot recycling. Existing bituminous pavements are being discarded in many cases when overpass or underpasses or flyovers are constructed. If milling is done RAP is sometimes used in GSB or WMM, which is not only a huge waste of expensive bitumen, it also lowers the functional quality of GSB and WMM.]
1.1 This specification deals with the basic outline for the design, production, construction, and controls needed while laying hot recycled, plant-mixed dense graded bituminous mixes for base course, binder course, and wearing course. This recycling process involves combining virgin and/or reclaimed aggregate material (RAM) and reclaimed asphalt pavement (RAP) material in hot mix plant. At least 10 % of RAP material consisting of cold milled or crushed hot bituminous mix shall be used. Modification of batch or drum plant is necessary for this process of hot recycling. 1.2 Specifications for Dense Graded Bituminous Mixes IRC: 111-2009 shall be followed to produce and lay recycled hot bituminous mixes with the additional requirements noted in this specification. 1.3 Types of dense graded bituminous mixes, their use, number of layers and layer thicknesses shall be as shown in Table 1 of IRC: 111-2009. [Note to reviewer: At least 10% RAP requirement in the recycled mix is based on bad practical experience in developed countries. At low rates such as 5%, contractors started to dribble in RAP of dubious quality without doing a proper mix design. At low rates there is no problem in meeting the specified gradation no matter whatever is the source or composition of the RAP. With at least 10% RAP contractor will have to design the recycled mix properly and get it approved.] 3. MATERIALS Same as IRC: 111-2009 except the following modified or additional requirements: (a) Bitumen If the amount of RAP in the recycled hot bituminous mix is 20% or less, the viscosity grade of virgin bitumen shall be same as specified in Table 2 of IRC: 111-2009. If the amount of RAP in the recycled mix is 21 to 30%, the viscosity grade of the virgin bitumen shall be one grade softer than that normally specified for 100% virgin mix. For example, if VG-30 is specified for 100% virgin mix, VG-20 grade shall be used in the recycled mix. If the amount of RAP exceeds 30%, the viscosity grade of the virgin bitumen shall be established by using blending chart given in ASTM D 4887 Preparation of Viscosity Blends for Hot Recycled Bituminous Materials. This blending chart uses the viscosity of aged bitumen in the RAP and the proportion of virgin binder in the total binder content of the recycled mix. Under no circumstances, the selected viscosity grade shall be more than two grades softer than the grade normally used for the project. [Note to reviewer: The recommended viscosity grades for different amounts of RAP are largely based on findings of major research projects conducted in the US and are well established practices and specifications in many states which have vast experience in hot recycling. Indian conditions are not significantly different.] (b) Reclaimed Asphalt Pavement (RAP) Material The RAP shall be obtained from a uniform stockpile built by cold milling or crushing hot bituminous mixes obtained from similar bituminous courses of existing bituminous pavements. The RAP material shall be free of foreign materials and shall have minimal segregation.
The RAP shall be processed such that the final recycled mix meets all requirements of the specific mix as laid down in IRC: 111-2009. The RAP shall readily break down and mix with the virgin materials during the hot mixing process and shall not affect the paving operation. At least 95% of the RAP particles shall pass through a 50-mm sieve prior to mixing with the virgin materials. Additional crushing and sizing may be required if the maximum size of the aggregate in the RAP exceeds the maximum size of the aggregate in the specified recycled mix. [Note to reviewer: It has been proven in the field that RAP particles of size 50 mm or less break down easily and mix with virgin materials effectively.] (c) Reclaimed Aggregate Material (RAM). If used, the RAM shall meet all the applicable requirements of coarse and fine aggregates as specified in IRC: 111-2009 Sections 3.2 and 3.3. (d) Composition of Mixtures The composition (bitumen content and gradation) of the recycled bituminous mix shall comply with the composition of 100% virgin mix as specified in Section 3.5 of IRC: 111-2009. 4. DESIGN OF RECYCLED MIXES Design of hot recycled mix shall be conducted as per Section 4 of IRC: 111-2009 except as noted below. The total amount of RAP in the recycled mix shall be limited to 20% in wearing courses and 50% in binder and base courses. [Note to reviewer: Maximum amount of RAP allowed in the recycled mix varies in the US. Many states in the US do not have any maximum limits. The above limits of 20% for wearing courses and 50% for binder and base courses are reasonable for India since the hot recycling equipment is well established. Whereas 50% RAP may not easily be used in batch plants, it is feasible in drum plants especially the double barrel drum plants which are expected in India soon.] At least 5 random samples of RAP shall be obtained from the approved RAP stockpile for conducting extraction tests to determine the average bitumen content and average gradation of aggregate in the RAP. When determining the blending proportions of various aggregates, the extracted aggregate shall be considered as one of the aggregates. The average bitumen content extracted from RAP shall be considered to be effective and useful in the recycled mix. For example, if RAP has 5.0% bitumen content and 20% RAP is used in the recycled mix, 1.0% bitumen content in the recycled mix shall be considered to be contributed by the RAP during mix design. If the desired bitumen content of trial mix is 5.5% then only 4.5% virgin bitumen shall be added to the trial mix. For preparing trial batches of recycled mix at different bitumen contents, RAP shall be heated in an oven maintained at the desired mix temperature for no more than one
hour. The viscosity grade of the virgin bitumen to be used in designing and producing recycled mix shall be as specified in Section 3 (a) of this specification. If the amount of RAP in the recycled mix exceeds 30%, the viscosity grade of the virgin bitumen shall be established by using blending chart given in ASTM D Preparation of Viscosity Blends for Hot Recycled Bituminous Materials. This shall require extraction and recovery of the aged bitumen from the RAP from at least three random samples of the RAP from the stockpile. Bitumen shall be extracted as per ASTM D 2172 Quantitative extraction of Bitumen from Bituminous Paving Mixtures Method A – Centrifuge and recovery of the bitumen from solvent shall be conducted as per ASTM D 5404 Recovery of Asphalt from Solution Using the Rotary Evaporator. The recovered aged bitumen shall be tested for viscosity at 60 C as per IS 1206 (Part 2). Blending chart in ASTM D 4887 Preparation of Viscosity Blends for Hot Recycled Bituminous Materials uses viscosity of aged bitumen as well as target viscosity to be achieved in the recycled mix. If the target is to obtain VG-30 bitumen in the recycled mix, the target viscosity at 60 C shall be 3,000 poises. Similarly, if the target is to obtain VG-20 in the recycled mix, the target viscosity shall be 2,000 poises. Under no circumstances the selected viscosity grade shall be more than two grades softer than the grade normally used for 100% virgin mix. [Note to reviewer: Although a few states in the US allow the use of rejuvenating agent if the percentage of the RAP is high, most states allow the use of paving grade bitumen only to be on the safe side. If slightly large amount of rejuvenating agent is used by mistake, the hot mix can become soft easily.] The engineer may require during production that bitumen binder in the recycled mix be extracted, recovered, and tested for viscosity at 60 C. The viscosity of the recovered bitumen shall be within the range of 5,000 to 15,000 poises. If not, the Engineer may change the viscosity grade of the virgin bitumen. [Note to reviewer: The above requirement of viscosity range for bitumen recovered from recycled mix is based on practical experience and vast amounts of test data obtained in Florida and Georgia where AC-30 (equivalent to India’s VG-30) was used as conventional bitumen. This range is still being used although these states have now adopted PG 67-22 bitumen grade which is approximately equivalent to VG30.] 5. CONSTRUCTION OPERATION The construction operation shall conform to Section 5 Construction Operation in IRC: 111-2009 except as noted below. If hot recycling is done in a batch plant, it shall be modified to allow weighing the RAP material prior to incorporating it in the pug mill. The modification shall also consist of a suitably designed RAP cold feed bin (usually with steep sides); conveyor system; special surge bin above the weigh hopper if needed; chute for discharging RAP into the weigh hopper without any segregation and sticking of RAP material.
The virgin aggregate shall be heated to a suitable higher temperature than usual so that on combining with the RAP at ambient temperature the resulting mix temperature is within the range specified in Section 5 of IRC: 111-2009. The temperature of the superheated aggregate shall not exceed 315 C to avoid warping of the drier drum or damage to the bags of the bag house system. RAP shall be added last in the weigh hopper so that it can be heated through heat transfer from the superheated aggregate underneath. Adequate venting for the weigh hopper and pug mill shall be provided as a safety precaution to prevent build up of moisture/steam and dust emissions during mixing operation. A minimum dry mixing time of 15 seconds shall be required for the virgin aggregate and RAP before introducing the virgin asphalt binder in the pug mill. If the hot recycling is done in a drum mix plant it shall be modified to prevent direct contact of the RAP material with the burner flame and/or overheating of RAP material in the process. The modification shall include a suitably designed RAP cold feed bin (usually with steep sides) and a conveyor system to introduce RAP in the drum without any segregation and sticking of RAP material. An interlocking system of feeder and conveyor that synchronizes the RAP flow with the virgin aggregate flow into the drum shall be required during the continuous production. 6. CONTROLS Same as IRC: 111-2009 with no additional requirements. 7. REFERENCE Kandhal, P.S. and R.B. Mallick. Pavement Recycling Guidelines for State and Local Governments. US Federal Highway Administration Publication No. FHWA-SA-98042, December 1997. [Download Chapters 5, 6, 7 and 8 which address hot mix asphalt recycling in detail at http://www.scribd.com/doc/47299513/PavementRecycling-Guidelines-for-State-and-Local-Governments-Federal-HighwayAdministration-Publication-No-FHWA-SA-98-042-December-1997] ************************************ [Note to reviewers of this specification: The above specification was developed by Prof. Kandhal after consulting the specifications of three US states: Alabama, Florida and Georgia, which have widely and successfully used hot mix asphalt recycling over a period of several years using AC-30 (equivalent of VG-30) bitumen. The specifications were then drafted considering Indian conditions.]