Role of Surface Roughness in Surface Energy Calculation of Aggregate Minerals

Surface energy is a key material property and can work as a crucial parameter in various mechanical models to predict the moisture sensitivity and fatigue damage of asphalt mixtures. The calculated surface energy values of the aggregate minerals strongly depend on their surface roughness. Therefore, it is very relevant for accurate calculation of surface energy to study the relationship between roughness and surface energy. This study aims to investigate the relationship between surface roughness and surface energy of aggregate minerals. Two minerals—quartz and calcite—were used for this study. The surfaces of the mineral specimens were treated to achieve four levels of roughness. Their surface roughness was described by three roughness parameters. Based on the sessile drop method, an optical tensiometer with a 3D topography module was employed to measure the contact angle and the surface energy of the minerals with different roughness. The influences of surface roughness on the contact angle and the surface energy were then analyzed. The results showed that the contact angle for both quartz and calcite decreases with the increasing surface roughness when it is less than 90° and increases when it is greater than 90°. The Wenzel equation can remove the effect of surface roughness on the contact angles of the minerals. The surface energy of quartz and calcite in the presence of roughness at the microscale would be underestimated when using the measured (apparent) contact angle. The corrected surface energy based on the Wenzel equation must be applied to represent the real surface energy of the minerals.


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  • Accession Number: 01884528
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS, TRB, ATRI
  • Created Date: Jun 5 2023 9:08AM