Bitumen Emulsion, Definition, Various Types, and Grades

Bitumen Emulsion

How is it Produced?

What are its Various Types and Grades?

Bitumen emulsion is a liquefied type of bitumen with a low viscosity. By dispersing bitumen in water and adding an emulsifier, ordinary bitumen turns into a low viscosity liquid that can easily be used in a variety of applications, including repairing and maintaining roads, waterproofing, spraying, etc.

Emulsions make it easy to handle, store, transport, and apply bitumen at a lower temperature: Since this type of bitumen is liquid, there is no need to heat it before application. Moreover, applying bitumen emulsions using cold techniques reduces the consumption of energy and makes road construction environmentally friendlier.

What is Bitumen Emulsion Composition?

Bitumen emulsion is a combination of water and bitumen. As the mixture of water and oily products quickly separate, a third component is normally added to the mixture, in order to make it more stable.

Known as emulsifier, this third component is used for making a mixture of water and oil dispersed in each other. In addition to their ability to reduce the tension between oil and water molecules, emulsifiers have an electronic charge that affect the molecules of bitumen emulsion and lead to the categorization of it into Cationic and Anionic.

Cationic emulsifiers, for example, form a layer of positive charge around the bitumen droplets that prevent them from joining each other. This makes bitumen dispersion in water more durable.

The electronic charge of bitumen emulsion decides on what kind of surface it should be used. Some aggregates (such as marble aggregates) mix better with anionic bitumen emulsion and some others are a better solution to cationic bitumen emulsion (such as granite aggregates).

Bitumen Emulsions Cationic and Anionic

The Difference Between Cationic and Anionic Bitumen Emulsion

How is Bitumen Emulsion Manufactured?

When you buy bitumen emulsion, you need to be familiar with types and grades
When you buy bitumen emulsion, you need to be familiar with types and grades

Bitumen emulsion is usually made using a collide mill, which mixes bitumen with water and emulsifier. In this process, bitumen is milled into very small droplets that can easily suspend in the water.

With the addition of emulsifiers, bitumen droplets become more water friendly. Water droplets as well move closer to the tiny droplets of bitumen, making sure that the final bituminous product is stable enough.

In the manufacturing process, many factors such as droplets’ size, chemical addition, and the temperature of various components are accurately controlled. The resulting bitumen has a consistent structure that makes it unique for various applications

What are Different Types of Bitumen Emulsion?

Various emulsions are classified based on two main factors: particles’ electrostatic charge and breaking or setting time.

In an emulsion, if the particles’ charge be negative, the bitumen emulsion is called Anionic and introduces itself wit letter “A”. Otherwise, the bitumen is known as cationic and have the “C” letter. 

The second grading system of bitumen emulsion is closely related to the application. When applied to a surface, bitumen emulsion must break and set. Technically, breaking means the evaporation of water, which makes bitumen strong enough for sticking to aggregates and setting on the place of application.

The time that is needed for bitumen emulsion to lose water and behave like an ordinary bitumen, is called the reactivity rate. This parameter determines whether the bitumen is rapid setting emulsion, medium setting emulsion, and slow setting medium.

Another factor that can affect the reactivity of bitumen emulsion is the temperature of the surface onto which it is applied. In a hot weather, evaporation of water can accelerate.  

What is the composition of bitumen emulsion

Good to know that, the final mixture of bitumen emulsion contains 40% water and 60% bitumen and emulsifier.

Both cationic and anionic bitumen emulsions are categorized according to the setting time. Look at the table below to find the various categories of bitumen emulsion and their globally standard names.

Cationic Emulsions Anionic Emulsions
Rapid Settings (RS) Type CRS-1 CRS-2 RS-1 Rs-2
Medium Settings (MS) Type CMS-2 MS-2
Slow Settings (SS) Type CSS-1 CSS-1h Modified Css-1h SS-1 SS-1h Modified SS-1h

Bitumen Emulsion

Grades and Specifications

Bitumen Emulsion CSS-1h Specification
Property Min Max Test Method
Viscosity, Saybolt Furol at 25 °C, SFS 20 100 ASTM D244
Storage stability test, 24-h, % 1 ASTM D6930
Particle charge test positive ASTM D244
Sieve test, % 0.1 ASTM D6933
Cement mixing test, % 2.0 ASTM D6935
Distillation:
Residue,% 57 ASTM D244
Tests on residue from distillation test:
Penetration, 25°C (77°F), 100 g, 5 s 40 90 ASTM D5
Ductility, 25°C (77°F), 5 cm/min, cm 40 ASTM D113
Solubility in trichloroethylene, % 97.5 ASTM D2042
Bitumen Emulsion CMS-2 Specification
Property Min Max Test Method
Viscosity, Saybolt Furol at 50 °C, SFS 50 450 ASTM D244
Storage stability test, 24-h, % 1 ASTM D6930
Coating ability and water resistance:
Coating, dry aggregate Good ASTM D244
Coating, after spraying Fair ASTM D244
Coating, wet aggregate Fair ASTM D244
Coating, after spraying Fair ASTM D244
Particle charge test Positive ASTM D244
Sieve test, % 0.1 ASTM D6933
Distillation:
Oil distillate, by volume of emulsion, % 12 ASTM D6997
Residue, % 65 ASTM D244
Tests on residue from distillation test:
Penetration, 25°C (77°F), 100 g, 5 s 100 250 ASTM D5
Ductility, 25°C (77°F), 5 cm/min, cm 40 ASTM D113
Solubility in trichloroethylene, % 97.5  ASTM D2042
 Bitumen Emulsion CMS-2h Specification
Property Min Max Test Method
Viscosity, Saybolt Furol at 50 °C, SFS 40 450 ASTM D244
Storage stability test, 24-h, % 1 ASTM D6930
Coating ability and water resistance:
Coating, dry aggregate Good ASTM D244
Coating, after spraying Fair ASTM D244
Coating, wet aggregate Fair ASTM D244
Coating, after spraying Fair ASTM D244
Particle charge test Positive ASTM D244
Sieve test, % 0.1 ASTM D6933
Distillation:
Oil distillate, by volume of emulsion, % 12 ASTM D6997
Residue, % 65 ASTM D244
Tests on residue from distillation test:
Penetration, 25°C (77°F), 100 g, 5 s 40 90 ASTM D5
Ductility, 25°C (77°F), 5 cm/min, cm 40 ASTM D113
Solubility in trichloroethylene, % 97.5  ASTM D2042
 Bitumen Emulsion CMS-2h Specification
Property Min Max Test Method
Viscosity, Saybolt Furol at 50 °C, SFS 40 450 ASTM D244
Storage stability test, 24-h, % 1 ASTM D6930
Coating ability and water resistance:
Coating, dry aggregate Good ASTM D244
Coating, after spraying Fair ASTM D244
Coating, wet aggregate Fair ASTM D244
Coating, after spraying Fair ASTM D244
Particle charge test Positive ASTM D244
Sieve test, % 0.1 ASTM D6933
Distillation:
Oil distillate, by volume of emulsion, % 12 ASTM D6997
Residue, % 65 ASTM D244
Tests on residue from distillation test:
Penetration, 25°C (77°F), 100 g, 5 s 40 90 ASTM D5
Ductility, 25°C (77°F), 5 cm/min, cm 40 ASTM D113
Solubility in trichloroethylene, % 97.5  ASTM D2042
Bitumen Emulsion CRS-2 Specification
Property Min Max Test Method
Viscosity, Saybolt Furol at 25 °C, SFS 100 400 ASTM D244
Storage stability test, 24-h, % 1 ASTM D6930
Demulsibility, 35 mL, 0.8 % dioctyl sodium sulfosuccinate, % 40 ASTM D6936
Coating ability and water resistance:
Particle charge test Positive ASTM D244
Sieve test, % 0.1 ASTM D6933
Distillation : 
Oil distillate, by volume of emulsion, % 3 ASTM D6997
Residue, % 65 ASTM D244
Tests on residue from distillation test:
Penetration, 25°C (77°F), 100 g, 5 s 100 250 ASTM D5
Ductility, 25°C (77°F), 5 cm/min, cm 40 ASTM D113
Solubility in trichloroethylene, % 97.5 ASTM D2042
 Bitumen Emulsion SS-1 Specification
Property Min Max Test Method
Viscosity SSF, 25 °C (s) 20 100 ASTM D244
Viscosity SSF, 50 °C (s)  — ASTM D244
Storage stability, 24 h (%)   — 1 ASTM D6930
Demulcibility  , 0.02 N CaCl2 (%)  —
Cement mixing (%)  2
Sieve (%) 0.1 ASTM D6933
Residue (%) 57 ASTM-D244
Solubility in trichloroethylene % 97.5 ASTM D2042
Penetration 77°F (25°C) 100g,5s mm 100 200 ASTM D5
ductility, 77°F (25 °C), 5cm/min (cm) 40 ASTM D113
 Bitumen Emulsion SS-1h Specification
Property Min Max Test Method
Viscosity SSF , 25 °C (s) 20 100 ASTM D244
Viscosity SSF, 50 °C (s)  — ASTM D244
Storage stability, 24 h (%)   — 1 ASTM D6930
Cement mixing (%)  2
Sieve (%) 0.1 ASTM D6933
Residue (%) 57 ASTM-D244
Solubility in trichloroethylene % 97.5 ASTM D2042
Penetration 77°F (25°C) 40 90 ASTM D5
ductility, 77°F (25 °C), 5cm/min (cm) 40 ASTM D113
Bitumen Emulsion RS-1 Specification
Property Min Max Test Method
Viscosity SSF, 25 °C (s) 20 100 ASTM D244
Storage stability, 24h (%) 1 ASTM D6930
Demulcibility  , 35ml, 8% dioctyl sodium sulfosuccinate, %  60 ASTM D6936
Particle charge test Minus  ASTM D244
Sieve (%) 0.1 ASTM D6933
Residue by distillation (%) 55  — ASTM D244
Residue penetration, 25 °C 100 200 ASTM D5
Solubility in trichloroethylene % 97.5 ASTM D2042
Residue ductility, 25 °C, 5cm/min (cm) 40 ASTM D113
Bitumen Emulsion RS-2 Specification
Property Min Max Test Method
Viscosity SSF, 25 °C (s) 20 100 ASTM D244
Storage stability, 24h (%) 1 ASTM D6930
Demulcibility  , 35ml, 8% dioctyl sodium sulfosuccinate, %  60 ASTM D6936
Particle charge test Minus  ASTM D244
Sieve (%) 0.1 ASTM D6933
Residue by distillation (%) 63  — ASTM D244
Residue penetration, 25 °C 100 200 ASTM D5
Solubility in trichloroethylene % 97.5 ASTM D2042
Residue ductility, 25 °C, 5cm/min (cm) 40 ASTM D113
Bitumen Emulsion MS-2 Specification
Property Min Max Test Method
Viscosity SSF, 25 °C (s) 20 100 ASTM D244
Storage stability, 24h (%) 1 ASTM D6930
Particle charge test Minus  ASTM D244
Sieve (%) 0.1 ASTM D6933
Residue by distillation (%) 65  — ASTM D244
Residue penetration, 25 °C 100 200 ASTM D5
Solubility in trichloroethylene % 97.5 ASTM D2042
Residue ductility, 25 °C, 5cm/min (cm) 40 ASTM D113
Bitumen Emulsion MS-2h Specification
Property Min Max Test Method
Viscosity SSF, 25 °C (s) 20 100 ASTM D244
Storage stability, 24h (%) 1 ASTM D6930
Particle charge test Minus  ASTM D244
Sieve (%) 0.1 ASTM D6933
Residue by distillation (%) 65  — ASTM D244
Residue penetration, 25 °C 40 90 ASTM D5
Solubility in trichloroethylene % 97.5 ASTM D2042
Residue ductility, 25 °C, 5cm/min (cm) 40 ASTM D113
Bitumen Emulsion HFMS-1 Specification
Property Min Max Test Method
Viscosity, Saybolt Furol at 25 °C, SFS 20 100 ASTM D244
Storage stability, 24h (%) 1 ASTM D6930
Particle charge test   Minus  ASTM D6936
Sieve (%)  — 0.1 ASTM D6933
Residue by distillation (%) 55 ASTM D244
Residue penetration, 25 °C 100 200 ASTM D5
Residue ductility, 25 °C, 5cm/min (cm) 40  — ASTM D113
Solubility in trichloroethylene % 97.5 ASTM D2042
Float of residue. 60 °C (s) 1200 ASTM D139
Bitumen Emulsion HFMS-2 Specification
Property Min Max Test Method
Viscosity, Saybolt Furol at 25 °C, SFS 100 ASTM D244
Storage stability, 24h (%) 1 ASTM D6930
Particle charge test   Minus  ASTM D6936
Sieve (%)  — 0.1 ASTM D6933
Residue by distillation (%) 65 ASTM D244
Residue penetration, 25 °C 100 200 ASTM D5
Residue ductility, 25 °C, 5cm/min (cm) 40  — ASTM D113
Solubility in trichloroethylene % 97.5 ASTM D2042
Float of residue. 60 °C (s) 1200 ASTM D139
Bitumen Emulsion HFMS-2s Specification
Property Min Max Test Method
Viscosity, Saybolt Furol at 25 °C, SFS 50 ASTM D244
Storage stability, 24h (%) 1 ASTM D6930
Particle charge test   Minus  ASTM D6936
Sieve (%)  — 0.1 ASTM D6933
Residue by distillation (%) 65 ASTM D244
Solvents, by volume of emulsion 1 7 ASTM D6997
Residue penetration, 25 °C 200 ASTM D5
Residue ductility, 25 °C, 5cm/min (cm) 40  — ASTM D113
Solubility in trichloroethylene % 97.5 ASTM D2042
Float of residue. 60 °C (s) 1200 ASTM D139
Bitumen Emulsion HFMS-2h Specification
Property Min Max Test Method
Viscosity, Saybolt Furol at 25 °C, SFS 100 ASTM D244
Storage stability, 24h (%) 1 ASTM D6930
Particle charge test   Minus  ASTM D6936
Sieve (%)  — 0.1 ASTM D6933
Residue by distillation (%) 65 ASTM D244
Residue penetration, 25 °C 40 90 ASTM D5
Residue ductility, 25 °C, 5cm/min (cm) 40  — ASTM D113
Solubility in trichloroethylene % 97.5 ASTM D2042
Float of residue. 60 °C (s) 1200 ASTM D139
Bitumen Emulsion HFRS-2 Specification
Property Min Max Test Method
Viscosity, Saybolt Furol at 25 °C, SFS 20 100 ASTM D244
Storage stability, 24h (%) 1 ASTM D6930
Particle charge test   Minus  ASTM D6936
Sieve (%)  — 0.1 ASTM D6933
Demulcibility  , 35ml, 8% dioctyl sodium sulfosuccinate, %  60  — ASTM D6933
Residue by distillation (%) 63 ASTM D244
Residue penetration, 25 °C 100 200 ASTM D5
Residue ductility, 25 °C, 5cm/min (cm) 40  — ASTM D113
Float of residue. 60 °C (s) 1200 ASTM D139

What Factors are Important in Grading Bitumen Emulsion?

Bitumen Emulsion Testing
Bitumen Emulsion Testing

Viscosity

The first vital factor for grading bitumen emulsion is the viscosity value. The viscosity of bitumen emulsion is determined by its bitumen content. An emulsion with small droplet size and a narrow distribution will give a higher viscosity.

Ductility

To indicate the bitumen resistance to breaking, a ductility test is done. This testing system measures the extent to which a sample of bitumen can stretch before breaking. A bitumen emulsion that its ductility is more than 40 cm makes the surface of a road safe and strong to heavy traffic and do not break easily.

Penetration

The softness level of bitumen is indicated by entering a standard needle into it. The harder the bitumen, the better it is for using in hot temperatures. The standard range of penetration can vary among different grades of bitumen emulsion.

Viscosity Test on Bitumen
Ductility Test on Bitumen
Penetration Test on Bitumen

Storage Stability

This parameter evaluates the stability of bitumen emulsion during the storage. known also as sedimentation, storage stability shows if the bitumen emulsion droplets settle after manufacturing or not.

For testing the sedimentation of bitumen emulsion, a sample of bitumen is stored in a cylinder in the room temperature. After 24 hours, two sample will be taken, one from the top of the cylinder and the other from the bottom. The weight of two samples will be compared at the next stage. The difference between two samples’ weight should not exceed 1 unit.

Two main factors that affect the storage stability of bitumen emulsion are viscosity level and the droplet size. A bitumen with smaller droplets has less risk of settlement.

Bitumen Emulsion_Storage Stability