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Article Dans Une Revue Energy & Fuels Année : 2011

Influence of thermomechanical history on chemical and rheological behavior of bitumen


It is well-known that asphaltene content plays an important role in determining the high viscosity of bitumen. This paper presents an experimental study of the specific effects of extrusion operating conditions on the physical and chemical properties of bitumen. Five bitumen samples were prepared by twin screw extrusion with different operating conditions (feed rate Q and screw speed N). Physical properties were studied by rheological measurements. Viscosity values were measured by steady state flow tests. Chemical changes in the bitumen structure were followed in the infrared region with attenuated total reflectance Fourier transform infrared (ATR-FTIR) spectroscopy by measuring the evolution of the bands areas at 1700 cm-1 (C=O), 1030 cm-1 (S=O), and 1600 cm-1 (aromatic C=C) and the bands between 900 and 730 cm-1 attributed to aromatic C-H. An increase in feed rate Q induces a decrease in the Newtonian viscosity, as a result of a decrease in the asphaltene volume fraction. The characterization by ATR confirms that the decrease in feed rate entails the creation of C=O functional groups and the increase in sulfoxide (S=O) functional groups and C=C bonds, accompanied by a decrease in the C-H aromatic bonds. These results indicate a structure that is more oxidized and more aggregated at low feed rate, certainly as the result of an increase in the residence time into the extruder. The increase in screw speed also induces decreases in the viscosity and the volume fraction of asphaltenes, until a point after which the situation reverses. This change may be explained by the appearance of new peaks between 1200 and 1050 cm-1, attributed to C=S bonds, and between 640 and 540 cm-1, for S-S bonds. A competition between shear rate and residence time takes place. The thermomechanical history has, thus, a great influence on the chemical and rheological behavior of pure bitumen, and the chemical changes observed show that the asphaltene volume fraction is not the unique parameter that explains the variations in viscosity.

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Dates et versions

hal-00642180 , version 1 (17-11-2011)



Mouhamad Mouazen, Arnaud Poulesquen, Bruno Vergnes. Influence of thermomechanical history on chemical and rheological behavior of bitumen. Energy & Fuels, 2011, 25 (10), pp.4614-4621. ⟨10.1021/ef201000j⟩. ⟨hal-00642180⟩
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