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Using Petroleum Coke in Asphalt

Using Petroleum Coke in Asphalt

Using Petroleum Coke in Asphalt

I’m wondering if anyone has any advice/suggestions/experience using petroleum coke in asphalt? I’m working with an environmental company to do some remediation work on a former oil refinery and we have a bunch of pet coke laying around. It would be awesome if we could use that coke for a bunch of asphalt roads we plan on building down there, but we need some sort of parameters and then some way to test to those parameters.

For example, is there a maximum amount of coke we can add to asphalt before the asphalt starts to become unacceptable, strength wise? Do y'all have any idea what that limit is? If not, can one of y'all and I work together to devise a test to determine that limit?

Any advice anyone can provide is greatly appreciated, or if you can tell me someone else to contact that may know these answers.

RE: Using Petroleum Coke in Asphalt

Randy West at NCAT would know. I used to work with him at APAC in the 1990s. Very smart dude, not sure how busy he is nowadays to field questions from the peanut gallery though. I haven't touched asphalt in almost 20 years.

I'll guess the answer is, "yes, you can do it, but you'll need a proper mix design." Mix design in asphalt is a complicated deal, and very contingent on aggregate properties. I don't know much about petcoke, but if you can grind it into dust then you can probably dispose of it in your mix, maybe as much as 5% by asphalt weight, in the place of baghouse fines.

Most asphalt paving companies have mix design technicians in-house that design the road mixes. Each mix for a road is unique, depending on the properties of the quarried aggregate you're going to make the road out of. The process of doing the mix design takes time, and the creation and testing of samples. So it's not cheap, but the cost of the design and testing is often baked into the road paving contract. If I were you, I'd make a list of the top 3 DOT paving contractors in your area, ask them if they're interested in the paving job, and then let them try to concoct a mix design that will spoil some of your material.

Hydrology, Drainage Analysis, Flood Studies, and Complex Stormwater Litigation for Atlanta and the South East - http://www.campbellcivil.com

RE: Using Petroleum Coke in Asphalt

seems questionable at best. assuming 25% replacement (which is high) by volume for a mile of two lane road, you would maybe use 600 or 700 yards of material. Plus you would have to haul it to the batch plant and probably grind and screen first. Maybe you could haul it to the plant and burn it to heat the asphalt.

RE: Using Petroleum Coke in Asphalt

Thanks beej67 and cvg! beej67, would you happen to have an email address for Mr. West?

RE: Using Petroleum Coke in Asphalt


The heaviest portion of crude oil, typically referred to as bottoms, can be turned into asphalt or petcoke. The refineries choose to turn their bottoms into either product based upon the local market. But there is a finite market for asphalt, and to produce petcoke the refinery needs to have a coker, which requires a significant investment. The objective of the coker is to process the asphalt-like material to produce higher value products, such as gasoline, diesel fuel, LPG, and petroleum coke.

Petcoke is 90% carbon and suitable for fuel not asphalt. You can't take petcoke and go backward in the process and turn it into asphalt.

RE: Using Petroleum Coke in Asphalt

@randymel...how did this project turn out for you? we are in a similar situation and would like to know if this is a possible option?

RE: Using Petroleum Coke in Asphalt

That's great info Bimr, thanks. Didn't know that.

Hydrology, Drainage Analysis, Flood Studies, and Complex Stormwater Litigation for Atlanta and the South East - http://www.campbellcivil.com

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