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Using waste plastics in roads - ARRB's research

by Guy Hand on June 24, 2020

The Australian Road Research Board (ARRB) is at the forefront of research into using waste plastics in road construction.

We are testing different types of plastics to see if and how they can be successfully used in building roads.

Success would mean a huge boost for the circular economy, as ARRB CEO Michael Caltabiano explains.

 

 

 

So how do we incorporate waste plastic into asphalt? Here's an explanation of how this is done as part of our rigorous testing.

 

 

 

To use waste plastics in road construction, we need to understand the characteristics of the many types of plastics available.

Things like their melting point, molecular weight and rheology.

A specialised test being undertaken as part of ARRB’s research could hold the key to the overall success of using waste plastics in roads.

 

 

We took two sources of waste plastic - a blended plastic and a raw plastic product - and blended them with bitumen.

So how did they individually perform in ARRB's research into using waste plastics in roads? The results were fascinating, as this video explains.

 

 

ARRB has significant experience in researching recycled materials in roads. We are leading the way in our work with crumb rubber, and recycled glass, working with industry and government to make recycled roads a reality.

Want to know more? Visit our Sustainability and Resilience section here for more information.

Topics: Sustainability, Pavement, Road and Transport Research, Bitumen, Recycled Pavement