GRAPHENE EMBEDDED BITUMINOUS ROADS: A NEW LOOK INTO THE DESIGN OF COMPLEX NANOCOMPOSITES
Paper in proceedings, 2019
The chemistry of bitumen and the percentage of asphaltene can vary significantly depending on external and internal factors such as the source and method of bitumen extraction. This makes graphene embedded bitumen a complex ternary phase system. Within the framework of this paper, we focus on the phase stability and particle interaction between graphene and asphaltene in order to optimize the process of tailoring the microstructure of graphene embedded bitumen to improve the gas barrier and mechanical properties. We use characterization techniques such as rotational-rheometer, DSC, chemical titration and road engineering standards such as RTFOT and penetration-grade to study the critical-clustering-concentration, phase behavior and the impact of embedding graphene to manufacturing process of asphalt. Phase separation and agglomeration of dissimilar nanoparticles was observed when graphene embedded bitumen (1 % vol) was subjected to RTFOT, increasing the change in viscosity by around 13 % when compared to 10 % in std. bitumen. Hence this paper aspires to provide a brief look into tailoring of nanocomposites with dissimilar nanoparticles and embedding nanoparticles such as graphene into complex matrices.