IP 551: Bitumen and bituminous binders - Accelerated long-term ageing/conditioning by the rotating cylinder method (RCAT)

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  • Method adopted/last revised: 2007
  • Method reapproved: None
  • REF/ISBN: IP551-2936450
  • Status: Current
  • First printed in STM books: January 2007


This European Standard specifies an accelerated ageing/conditioning procedure for bitumen, bituminous binders and bituminous mastics. The procedure involves rotating cylinder ageing (RCA), i.e binder ageing at moderate temperatures in a large cylinder rotating in an oven under oxygen flow conditions. Prior to long-term ageing with this method, samples are prepared in the condition they would be applied to the road.

This method is also applicable to modified binders and bituminous mastics.

NOTE For binders used in hot asphalt applications pre-conditioning of the sample would typically be by one of the methods given in EN 12607-1 or EN 12607-2 or directly in the RCAT cylinder to an equivalent ageing level. For binders used in bituminous emulsion and cut-back application, stabilising the sample would typically be by methods given in EN 14895. For bituminous emulsion, stabilising the sample can also be realised directly in the RCAT cylinder under a nitrogen flow (quantity-temperature-time have still to be experienced).

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