The result from the MIAF project is a prototype of equipment that, controlled from a computer, can scan a sample of PMB and collect images. After collecting the images determinations of the characteristics is done base on image analysis. This procedure is only possible due to the developed sample preparation method and image processing system.
Results obtained from the image analysis have been compared with results obtain from empirical and fundamental chemical and physical testing. Using statistical methods it has been proven that chemical and mechanical properties of polymer modified binders can be predicted. However, background information such as type of used polymer, origin of used base bitumen must be known.
The developed sample preparation technique will be suggested to the CEN committee dealing with test methods on polymer modified bitumens. This will enables the producers of polymer modified bitumen to control the production and quality of the blended polymer modified bitumen.
It is proposed to develop an semi automatic optical system for quality analysis of polymer modified bitumen(PM). The present lack of an adequate analysis retards the market development of PMB with superior durability performance compared to traditional bitumen.
The proposed analysis system is based on microscopy image analysis using fluorescent light(MIAF). An EC feasibility award has shown that fluorescent light microscopy can be used for characterizing the microstructure of PMB.
The system will be realized trough completion of the following tasks:
-Initial set-up of the microscopy image analysing system
-Development of a prototype for three-dimensional MIAF-analysing
-Development of a library of MIAF-images in an image data base
-Physical,chemical and MIAF-tests of PMB-binders and PMB-mixes in laboratory scale
-Physical,chemical and MIAF-tests of PMB-binders and PMB-mixes in field production
Succesfull competion and implementation of the research will have a considerable impact on a 140.000 MECU per market. Improved process control will result in about 10% reduction in operating costs. The improved durability of the bitumen products will yield considerable materials and cost savings on the infrastructure by improving lifetime more than 40%.
Potential annual savings is estimated at about 2.000 MECU.
Funding SchemeCSC - Cost-sharing contracts
1633 ZG Avenhorn
NG7 2RD Nottingham