What is RUBBERAP?
RUBBERAP is an international cooperation project between the University of Palermo, the Gustave Eiffel University and Ecopneus scpa, Italian non-profit company for the tracking, collection, processing, and final destination of end-of-life tyres.
The project aims to provide scientific evidence regarding the feasibility of effectively use Rubberised Reclaimed Asphalt (Rub-RAP) at laboratory scale and beyond.
How effectively recycling rubberised asphalt mixes?
To achieve that, a multidisciplinary experimental programme involving the engineering characterisation of reclaimed rubberised asphalt will be performed, furthermore the mechanical performance and the quality of the fumes produced during the mixing will be determined. The laboratory campaign will be carried out by comparing benchmark mixes as control with Rub-RAP mixes produced with at least two aging cycles.
The novelties offered by this study
Investigating wet, dry and hybrid asphalt rubber technologies.
Producing mixes with high content of Rub-RAP (50%)
Analysing the Rub-RAP mixes in terms of fumes quality and performance-related tests
The project is developed in collaboration with Ecopneus and the Gustave Eiffel University and based at the engineering department of the University of Palermo. Other partners may be involved during the 24 months, with aim of providing qualitative support and/or further features to enrich the project proposal.
Rubberised asphalt mixtures with Engineered Crumb Rubber (ECR): In Sicily the first road section
After the first paving tests in Switzerland, rubberised asphalt mixtures developed in the United States are also arriving in Italy. The technology used, (ECR: Engineered Crumb Rubber), does not require any adaptation of the asphalt plant, nor specific equipment for laying and compaction. The technological adaptation to Italian specifications is currently being handled by the laboratories of Roads, Railways and Airports of Engineering Department at UNIPA within the RUBBERAP project with the support of Ecopneus. At the same time, in collaboration with SMACOM and DS ASFALTI of S. Ninfa (TP), a test section was laid to verify the absence of operational limitations during the mixing, laying and compacting phases. Workers, entrepreneurs, and technicians from 6 municipalities in the Trapani area have found that the workability, the emission of fumes and the cleaning of the equipment are even improved compared to conventional asphalts.
In 100 meters of road pavement, it was possible to recycle about 80 tires. The costs remain competitive and thanks to the technological development of the partners involved, improvements in the performance of the pavement are expected in terms of mechanical properties, possible reduced noise emissions and prolonged maintenance of the chromatic characteristics (horizontal signs more visible as the surface remains black longer).