An Improved Asphalt Penetration Test Method
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A traditional penetration test only measures the total penetration within 5 s. The penetration process is not monitored, and therefore, a large amount of information on the deformation properties of asphalt is not used. This paper documents a study to use a high-speed camera to quantify the entire penetration process and use the Finite Element Method (FEM) to interpret the penetration process using a viscoelastic model. The penetration–time relationships of several asphalt binders (70#, 90#, a rubber modified binder, and a styrene-butadiene-styrene (SBS) modified binder) have been acquired using the new method, and the FEM modeling of the penetration processes is performed. The results show that both stress relaxation and creep appear during the penetration process. The results indicate that the improved test method and its data interpretation procedure may better characterize the properties of asphalt binder, which may extend the applications of the traditional penetration test.