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Pavement Engineering – Asphalt & Concrete Development

Jurandir Primo, P.E.

This course of Pavement Engineering – Asphalt & Concrete Development brings the most important current and summarized concepts of this subject. The main objective of this study is to show how asphalt and concrete has been developed along the history, almost always in parallel. Pavement engineering is a branch of civil engineering of both asphalt and concrete pavements, which includes roads, streets, highways, sidewalks, curbs, roofs, walls and so on, as well new constructions, rehabilitation and maintenance of existing pavements, but also involves mechanical engineering, electrical systems, automation and good knowledge of material properties, surveying, geology and hydraulics. There is an essential difference between pavement and paving. Pavement may be internal or external superficial surface covering, and paving is when paving materials are used, such as, concrete, bricks, stones, cobblestone, tiles, even asphalt, and sometimes wood.

The word “asphalt” is based on the Latin “asphalton or asphaltum”, a latinisation of the Greek “ásphaltos or ásphalton”, and the word concrete comes from the French “concret” or the Latin “concretus”, past participle of “concrescere”, which means “grow together”. Later, in the late Middle English, “concrete” also became the meaning of “solidified”. The word "bitumen", according to specialists was originated in the Sanskrit word “jatu”, meaning "pitch" or "pitch producing", referring to a coniferous or resinous tree. The Latin equivalent is claimed by some to be originally “pixtumens”, which was subsequently shortened to bitumen, via French into English.

The terms "asphalt" and "bitumen" are often used interchangeably to mean both natural and distillery residues of the same substance. In American English, "asphalt" (or "asphalt cement") is commonly used for a refined residue from the distillation process of selected crude oils. Outside the United States, the product is often called "bitumen", and geologists worldwide often prefer the term for the naturally occurring variety, but common colloquial usage, also often refers to various forms of asphalt, as "tar".

This course includes a multiple-choice quiz at the end, which is designed to enhance the understanding of the course materials.

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