Q: Can Asphalt Be Recycled?
A: Yes asphalt is 100% recyclable.
Q: What Is RAP?
A: RAP stands for ‘Reclaimed Asphalt Pavement’, asphalt pavement material that has been removed from paved surfaces and/or reprocessed (recycled).
Q: How is Asphalt Recycled 100%?
A: Asphalt chunks or millings are loaded into an asphalt recycler. The recycle tumbles and heats the material. After approximately 20 minutes of heating the hot mix asphalt is typically 300F and ready for laydown using conventional techniques.
Q: How is Asphalt Recycled at a Hot Mix Asphalt Plant?
A: First the RAP asphalt millings and/or broken chunk asphalt is crushed and screened to the appropriate size. Then, with the use of a special RAP collar fitted to the asphalt plant, RAP is introduced and mixed with virgin materials. The hot mix asphalt plant is able to recycle 30% (sometimes more) RAP into the final ‘virgin’ mix.
Q: What is the Cost Benefit of 100% Asphalt Recycling?
A: There is a profit/savings potential of $30.00-$80.00/ton recycled. The wide savings range relates directly to the range in asphalt costs across the USA. Contractors and municipalities can recycle their RAP materials for approximately $18.00 /ton using a PT-PRO Series Recycler. If hot mix purchased at the asphalt plant cost $78.00/ton, then there is an effective savings of $60.00/ton. Therefore, an owner operator recycling 50 tons/day for 30 days, will yield a savings/profit of $90,000.
Q: Is Asphalt Recycling Good For The Environment?
A: Yes, Asphalt Recycling benefits the environment in many ways. In particular, it reduces quarrying, mining and oil consumption. Every year, approximately 75 million tons of asphalt is recycled. Asphalt recycling reduces our consumption of scarce natural resources (aggregate and asphalt) and simultaneously keeps 75 million tons of material out of US landfills. Recycling asphalt also dramatically reduces the consumption of resources such as fuel, machinery, transportation and labor when compared with producing virgin asphalt materials.
Q: Where Does RAP Come From?
A: Reclaimed Asphalt Pavement is typically acquired when asphalt pavement surfaces are milled off prior to repaving and when asphalt is removed during pavement repairs or prior to replacement. Most RAP material is the byproduct of asphalt pavement that has been removed from driveways, roadways, parking lots, highways and airports.
Q: What’s the Composition of RAP?
A: RAP, Reclaimed Asphalt Pavement is composed of a mixture of high quality, well graded aggregate that is coated with asphalt cement.
Q: What’s the Asphalt Content of RAP?
A: On larger projects, RAP is removed using a milling machine which grinds the asphalt into small pieces. On smaller jobs like driveways, roadways and utility repairs a skid-steer or backhoe is often used to remove the asphalt pavement.
A: The asphalt content of RAP is typically found to be around 4%-6%.
Q: Is Asphalt The Most Recycled Material In The USA?
A: Yes, according to the Federal Highway Administration 73 million tons of reclaimed asphalt pavement is reused every year. This is nearly twice as much as paper, glass, aluminum and plastics combined.
Q: How Do Paving Contractors Dispose of RAP?
A: Many contractors do not have a facility for processing (crushing and screening) RAP or for reusing RAP. Rather than paying a tipping fee at the landfill the contractor will often dispose of the RAP at the hot mix plant, which charges a small fee and then recycles the RAP and resells it.
Q: Is There a Carbon Saving From 100% Asphalt Recycling?
A: Yes, according to a study conducted in the UK by Accord Highways and Stafford-shire County Council in 2007, the VEB Asphalt Recycler was used to recycle 2,500 Metric Tonnes of recycled asphalt and yielded a 1,596 tonnes reduction in carbon emissions.
Q: How Does 100% Asphalt Recycling Benefit Paving Contractors?
A: Asphalt recycling benefits paving contractors through increased profitability, eliminated RAP disposal costs, reduced reliance on the hot-mix plant, the ability to produce hot mix material 24/7, ability to produce virgin asphalt (with certain asphalt recyclers) and increased opportunity benefits.
Q: How Does 100% Asphalt Recycling Benefit Municipalities?
A: Asphalt recycling benefits cities, county and state highway departments through: reduced hot-mix costs through recycling, eliminating RAP disposal costs, reduced reliance on the hot-mix plant, ability to produce hot mix material 24/7, ability to produce virgin asphalt (with certain asphalt recyclers) and the ability to eliminate wasted labor costs required when using cold patch for pothole repairs.
Q: Is 100% Recycled Asphalt Durable?
A: Yes, properly graded RAP with sufficient asphalt content, that is ‘properly’ recycled (not overheated and properly mixed) will perform nearly identically to virgin asphalt.
Q: What’s the Life Expectancy Using 100% Recycled Hotmix?
A: The results should be very similar to that of using a virgin hot mix asphalt. The biggest determining factor effecting material performance for both virgin and recycled asphalt is proper preparation of the repair site and adequate compaction by the crew.