Effect of Photocatalysts Modification on Asphalt: Investigations by Experiments and Theoretical Calculation

The application of photocatalysts on pavement engineering to degrade automobile exhaust has become a hot topic for researchers. However, the effect of photocatalysts on pavement materials has not been fully investigated. The primary purpose of this study is to explore the effect of a typical photocatalyst titanium dioxide (TiO₂) on the chemical structure and properties of asphalt through laboratory experiments and molecular dynamics (MD) simulation. Performance tests indicated that the physical properties of asphalt modified by TiO₂ changed more significantly compared with that of calcium carbonate (CaCO₃) and silica (SiO₂), which might be due to the smaller particle size of TiO₂. Atomic force microscopy (AFM) and Fourier infrared spectrum (FI-IR) analyses demonstrated that the addition of TiO₂ resulted in a smoother asphalt surface and a disappearance of the bee structure. Using TiO₂ would not accelerate the aging process of asphalt. Moreover, the MD simulation results indicated that a more significant interaction existed between TiO₂ and asphalt than that of CaCO₃ and SiO₂, which resulted in a tighter asphalt molecule and smaller free volume distribution in the TiO₂-asphalt system.


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  • Accession Number: 01767203
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS, ASCE
  • Created Date: Feb 27 2021 3:13PM