Thermal and mechanical evaluations of asphalt emulsions and mixtures for microsurfacing

Shuguang Hou, Chen Chen*, Junhui Zhang, Huajie Shen, Fan Gu

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In this study, four different emulsifiers were used to prepare asphalt emulsions. The effects of emulsifiers on emulsion stability were investigated using the storage stability test, laser particle size analyzer (LPSA), and differential scanning calorimetry (DSC). Furthermore, aggregate (0.15–0.3 mm) was mixed with asphalt emulsions to obtain emulsified asphalt mortar. The Brookfield rotational viscometer (BRV) was employed to determine the mortar viscosity and equilibration time. According to the laboratory results, the storage stability of asphalt emulsions were in agreement with the corresponding particle size and specific surface area. There was a linear relationship between the square of particle size and storage stability. In addition, the QA-emulsifier-prepared asphalt emulsion yielded the smallest particle size and greatest specific surface area. This indicated the QA asphalt emulsion had the highest storage stability, which was followed by AA, XA, and IM asphalt emulsion, respectively. The DSC results showed that the enthalpy change displayed a linear relationship with the equilibration time. It was also demonstrated that the XA asphalt emulsion had the highest thermal stability, which was followed by AA, IM, and QA asphalt emulsion, respectively. This implied that there was no consistent ranking between storage stability and thermal stability. Finally, the AA asphalt emulsion was selected to prepare microsurfacing mixtures. The performance tests results indicated that aggregate gradation, aggregate temperature, additional water content, cement content and sand equivalent affected the mixing time and demulsification time dramatically. The wet-track abrasion test (WTAT) results demonstrated that mixtures with higher asphalt emulsion content and sand equivalent tended to have a higher early strength and a lower moisture susceptibility.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1221-1229
Number of pages9
JournalConstruction and Building Materials
Early online date23 Oct 2018
Publication statusPublished - 10 Dec 2018


  • Asphalt emulsions
  • Microsurfacing
  • Thermal stability
  • WTAT


Dive into the research topics of 'Thermal and mechanical evaluations of asphalt emulsions and mixtures for microsurfacing'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this