Polymer Modified Bitumen Emulsion

Polymer Modified Bitumen Emulsion


Application Road Construction, Bituminous Waterproofing, Coating on Roofs
Features Suitable for highly stressed areas, High viscosity
Pack Size 100-250 Liter or as per clients demand
Grade Standard Reagent Grade, Technical Grade
Source Synthetic
Advantage No heating require, Very durable

Additional Information

Min. Order Quantity 200 Metric Ton

Polymer Modified Bitumen Emulsion (PMBE) is used to improve performance at high temperatures. Production of PMBE is difficult and needs more energy than the production of other categories of bitumen. Depending on the desired viscosity, varying amounts of bitumen are needed for producing PMBE. Normally, 67 to 70 percent of emulsions is bitumen and the performance has been satisfactory. But in PMBE, bitumen comprises 80 percent of the emulsion.

PMBE and regular bitumen emulsions are used similarly and they are sensitive to weather and workshop conditions. Their advantage is that their performance is high even under heavy traffic load. Few International standards have been defined for PMBE which is mainly used in road operations with heavy traffic load. This kind of bitumen is being used for paving highways because of its better resistance , otherwise with regular emulsion the asphalt may break soon.

Uses : Bitumen emulsions are often used in road surfacing. But due to their unique specifications, they are also used in the following cases:

  • Sealing
  • Microsurfacing
  • Surface dressing
  • Penetration coating
  • Surface coating
  • Protection asphalt
  • Mulching
  • Coating
  • Concrete sealing
  • Sealing
  • Asphalt cold mix
  • Preserving and Carrying Conditions

Bitumen emulsion is produced more quickly than it is consumed. Therefore, it is necessary to provide storage equipment. Bitumen emulsions need to be stored for months without losing their quality and physical specifications. Storage facilities for bitumen emulsions should not be tall and its horizontal cross-section must be the minimum possible. Emulsions of different ionic emulsifiers should never be mixed together and the storage facilities need to be fully cleaned before a different type of emulsion is stored. These storage tanks should have mixers to avoid agglomeration. Emulsions are very sensitive to freezing and they should not become frozen. A frozen emulsion is by no means reusable and therefore the emulsion storage tanks need to be equipped with heating system. The same principles apply to emulsion tankers and the only difference is that storage lasts longer.


Polymers represent the most important family of bitumen modifiers. Depending on the type of polymer, the specifications of bitumen under different temperatures change. For example, polymers make bitumen resistant to heating cracks. Modifying the bitumen specifications boosts the quality of the product and increases its longevity. As a result, the costs of preservation will decline sharply. The daily growing development of polymers and their diversity have caused widespread research on these materials across the world. SBS is one of the best modifying polymers with both thermoplastic and rubber specifications.

The pure bitumen produced in the country can supply the needs of consumers, but in certain cases, the physical specifications of the bitumen may not satisfy the clients. For example, road surfacing under heavy traffic load and under different weather conditions require some additional properties in the bitumen. Under these special circumstances, structural destructions happen more quickly than in natural state in asphalt pavement and that would significantly increase road maintenance costs. Under such circumstances, depending on the conditions, a variety of polymers are used for modifying the mechanical specifications of the bitumen.

The conditions affecting the choice of polymer are as follows :

  • Predictions about traffic load
  • Weather conditions: maximum and minimum temperature and precipitation
  • Materials (limestone or silicon)
  • Consumer polymer prices
  • Although polymer modified bitumen costs higher than pure bitumen, they are considered to be more economical because of economic benefits of lower costs of road repairs.

The general specifications of polymer modified bitumen are as follows:

  • More solidity than pure bitumen
  • Better resistance to deformation and rutting under high temperature
  • More resistance to cracking
  • More resistance to humidity damage
  • More durable surface
  • Since it has become common to mix asphalt with aggregate in the zones with high precipitation, polymer modified bitumen had better be used in order to improve visibility.

Despite its high price, polymer modified bitumen is recommended to be used in the following cases :

  • Surfaces exposed to heavy tensions
  • Surfaces where reconstruction operations would need high costs
  • Surfaces supposed to handle heavy loads like jetties and tarmacs
  • Surfaces in extremely hot or cold zones
  • Surfaces in zones with heavy rainfall
  • A limited number of polymers are good for modifying the specifications of bitumen. The polymers useful for that purpose are required to:
  • Be compatible with bitumen
  • Remain undamaged when mixed with asphalt
  • Improve the thermal sensitivity of the bitumen
  • Be mixed easily
  • Reach the necessary viscosity under normal temperature
  • Maintain its specifications during storage and after mixing with bitumen

A variety of polymers have been used as modifiers of bitumen, but they have their strengths and weaknesses.

A polymer modified bitumen is expected to meet the following conditions to be commercialized :

  • Bitumen-polymer mix should remain stable at high temperature for at least 5-7 days
  • Polymer should remain thermally stable
  • It should not need long time or high temperature for mixing

The polymers widely used for modifying bitumen are SBS, EVA, APP, LOPE, LLDE, HOPE, SBR, SEBS and SIS.
Since most polymers need Colloid Mill for proper mixing with bitumen and the amount of polymer being mixed with bitumen has to be formulated in the lab, lab test are recommended to specify the type and amount of polymer for mixing.

In using polymer modified bitumen, it has to be noted that the conditions for using them are to some extent different from pure and regular bitumen.

Therefore, consumers of these products had better take into consideration the recommendations of producers or acquire the necessary knowhow. In order to avoid separation of polymers from the structure of bitumen, the best way would be to shorten the period of preservation of polymer modified bitumen and their storage in tanks equipped with mixer. KB Oil produces bitumen modified with SBS, SBR, crumb rubber, sulfur and EVA.

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