October 15, 2014

GRAND JUNCTION, Colorado– United Companies will begin paving a Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) project at the Park-and-Ride facility in Clifton on April 9, 2010 using a new green technology called warm-mix asphalt. The project involves construction of two new parking lots off 32 Road for CDOT in Clifton and paving on Peach Street for Mesa County.

United Companies has invested in warm-mix asphalt technology for the inherent environmental benefits said Kyle Alpha, general manager for United Companies. This technology is used extensively in Europe and is catching fire in the US paving industry. Our industry and agency partners are in the experimental phase of implementation now in the US, but we are convinced this will be the standard manufacturing process of asphalt pavement in the future.

Warm-mix asphalt is a modification to the traditional manufacturing process that allows much cooler mixture temperatures to be used for pavement construction. The technology provides up to a 30-perfect reduction in green-house gas emissions at the asphalt plant, the ability to increase the amount of recycled asphalt pavement into the mixture, an extension of the asphalt construction season due to the cooler temperatures, a significant reduction of smoke at the asphalt paver and a plant fuel cost savings at the same time.

Research indicates that warm-mix asphalt is equivalent in quality to the traditional hot-mix asphalt. Various warm-mix technologies exist, but they all involve chemicals or water added to the asphalt to reduce its viscosity during the paving construction process. The technology United Companies employs creates a foam, mixing the asphalt cement with water prior to mixing the material with local rock and sand aggregates, and typically with recycled asphalt pavement material. Once the asphalt paving construction process is complete, the water evaporates from the mixture. What remains is the same pavement that would have been constructed with hot-mix asphalt, but this pavement is environmentally conscious.

United Companies appreciates CDOT and Mesa County for allowing us to demonstrate the benefits of warm-mix asphalt technology on this project, said Alpha. Allowing the industry to prove this technology on their project shows a significant concern these agencies have toward environmental stewardship.”

The West lot of the project was constructed using traditional hot-mix asphalt last fall. The East lot and Peach Street are being constructed in warm-mix asphalt for long-term durability studies.