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Asphalt Education

The United States has 2.2 million miles of paved roads, and about 94 per cent of them are surfaced with asphalt. Asphalt pavements are and continue to be America’s pavement of choice. Today’s current national and local economic conditions – combining reduced funding with high infrastructure needs – have elevated the importance of prudent spending. Decision makers exercising good stewardship practices can easily justify their decisions and choices to their constituents. Good stewardship practices include a detailed, logical, and documented pavement type selection process that includes a life-cycle cost analysis as a key component. Asphalt paving mixture consists of two major components; liquid asphalt cement and aggregates. The liquid asphalt cement (often called asphalt “binder”) is material that coats the aggregate particles and acts as the glue that holds the mix together. The aggregates may consist of natural aggregates (river gravel and sands) or processed aggregates (from quarry and blasting operations). The aggregates provide the structure and framework that gives an asphalt mixture its stability and strength. Another vital component to a well-constructed asphalt pavement is the presence of air voids in the mixture. The amount of air voids in the asphalt is controlled through the aggregate gradation and the quantity of liquid asphalt. The proper blend of asphalt and aggregates is determined prior to construction (during the mix design phase) for the mixture to have the desired properties. These materials are carefully proportioned and heated in an asphalt mixing plant and tested to be sure it meets all the project requirements. Most asphalt plants have on-site or nearby laboratory facilities capable of performing quality control tests in accordance with local or state specifications. The hot asphalt is loaded into dump trucks and delivered to the project location. Once on site, the asphalt is dumped into the paver hopper and the paving machine spreads and finishes the asphalt. Two or three steel-wheel rollers will then compact the asphalt to achieve the desired density. Through continued research and development, asphalt pavements can be designed and constructed to meet customer expectations for any pavement application. Common customer expectations are for pavements that are cost-effective, long-lasting, smooth, quiet, sustainable, and user friendly. Asphalt pavements excel in each of these areas, making them the most versatile and desirable pavement type. Effectively providing everyone a place to park, providing bike paths through natural settings, efficiently serving as your driveway, quietly guiding us home at night, improving drainage, and structurally engineered to transport cars, planes and freight quickly and safely to their destinations – asphalt is the pavement of choice. Kentucky chooses to ride on us.

Contact Information

Plantmix Asphalt Industry of Kentucky

PO Box 286

119 West Broadway, Depot Place

Frankfort, KY 40602




Brian K. Wood, Executive Director

Cherie Stivers, Office Manager

Erin Gibbs, Marketing Director