In 2007, WRI began work on two five-year Federal Highway Administration-sponsored programs, Fundamental Properties of Asphalts and Modified Asphalts III and the Asphalt Research Consortium. Both are advancing national goals of improving the performance, useful life, and economics of asphalt pavements.
The Fundamental Properties program correlates the chemical and physical properties of asphalt binders, aggregates and additives with their performance properties as “in-service” pavements. The Asphalt Research Consortium is working to cooperatively address key issues in asphalt performance, especially to promote technologies that can be put into service right away.
Both programs emphasize collaborative processes. To ensure that research addresses the ongoing needs of the asphalt community and other stakeholders, both the Fundamental Properties of Asphalts Research Program and the Asphalt Research Consortium rely on formalized input from the FHWA, the Expert Task Groups on (1) Binders, (2) Mixtures and Construction, and (3) Models, as well as industry and state representatives, in the development of their annual research plans.
WRI Achievements in Asphalt Research (A history of WRI asphalt and FHWA research).