Definition - What does Shot Blasting mean?

 Road surface condition generally and skid resistance in particular is now in the forefront of all highway authority engineers and highway maintenance contractors.

There is a heightened international interest in the re- lationship between skid resistance and accident levels and there is commitment to reduce all road accidents, especially fatalities. Recent developments in design of asphalt surfacing materials has produced many benefits including, noise reduction, spray reduction, faster laying with reduced cost, but it is still early days for these materials compared to over 100 years of traditional HRA and chips.

The new thin surfacing materials require high levels of quality control, both during production and laying to avoid surfaces with excess bitumen on the surface. Skid resistance of these materials is lower when first laid and may not reach its optimum for up to 2 years.

Blasting to remove the binder from the surface of the a gregate particles will give the road surface its maximum skid resistance in a uniform way across the whole ca riageway within just a few weeks of the surface course being laid. In addition when in 3 or 4 years the aggregate has become polished and the skid resistance dropped be- low an acceptable level blasting could regenerate it by exposing fresh aggregate and removing the polished sur- face. This may extend the life of the road by several years.

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In addition to this safety aspect of asphalt there is also a modern trend towards using materials with different colours and textures both for aesthetic reasons to enhance town centres, commercial projects and urban regeneration schemes, and for safety reasons of lane identification, hazard warning and demarcation.
Blasting in conjunction with asphalt mix design can achieve a whole new range of decorative finishes for asphalt including blends of aggregates of several colours and textures in one surface. Professional blasting of asphalt can offer solutions with significant benefits in all these areas.

 

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