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Properties of steel slag aggregate and steel

slag asphalt concrete


mr.sc. Mladen Fistri , dipl.ing.
dr.sc. Andrea Strineka, dipl.ing.
dr.sc. Ruica Roskovic, dipl.ing.
Institute IGH, Laboratory IGH, Zagreb, Croatia

Abstract
Ferrous slags (blast furnace slag, steel slag, ferro-alloy, etc.) are the industrial byproducts from a greatest interest to the pavement construction industry, given their wide availability and scope of uses. Above that, the production of aggregate from slag instead from rock
would decrease the amount of raw material extraction and enable further environmental benefit
since less industrial by-products would be disposed in landfills.
Until the regulations for construction products according to EU Directives didnt get in
force in Croatia, there were no technical requirements or specifications for the evaluation of
possible use of the slag aggregates in road construction. Therefore there is no much experience
in Croatia in the application of the slag aggregate in bituminous mixtures and the practical
application is rather in the research phase.
In this paper testing results of one type of steel slag aggregate produced in Croatia are
presented, as well as results of the asphalt produced from 75 % of steel slag aggregate and 25 %
of limestone rock aggregate. Analysis of results showed that the asphalt produced with the steel
slag aggregate has good resistance to permanent deformation, high stability with good flow
properties and high stiffness modulus.

Povzetek
elezne lindre (plavna lindra, jeklarska lindra, elezova zlitina itd.) so industrijski
stranski proizvodi, ki so zelo zanimivi za gradnjo zgornjega ustroja, ker so zelo dostopni in imajo
iroko podro je uporabe. Poleg tega bi proizvodnja agregata iz lindre namesto iz kamna zmanjala obseg pridobivanja surovin in omogo ila dodatne okoljske koristi, ker bi se na odlagali ih
zmanjala koli ina industrijskih stranskih proizvodov.
Do uveljavitve predpisov o gradbenih proizvodih v skladu z direktivami EU na Hrvakem
ni bilo tehni nih zahtev ali specifikacij za oceno morebitne uporabe agregatov iz lindre pri
gradnji cest. Zato na Hrvakem ni veliko izkuenj pri uporabi agregata iz lindre v bitumenskih
zmeseh, prakti na uporaba pa je e v fazi raziskav.
V tem prispevku so predstavljeni rezultati preskuanja vrste agregata iz jeklarske lindre,
proizvedenega na Hrvakem, in rezultati asfalta, izdelanega iz 75 odstotkov agregata iz jeklarske
lindre in 25 odstotkov agregata iz apnenca. Analiza rezultatov je pokazala, da ima asfalt, izdelan iz agregata jeklarske lindre, dobro odpornost na stalne deformacije, visoko stabilnost z
dobrimi prometnimi lastnostmi in modulom visoke togosti.

Fistri , M., Strineka, A., Roskovic, R.: Lastnosti agregata iz jeklarske lindre in asfaltnega betona iz jeklarske lindre

Fistri , M., Strineka, A., Roskovic, R.:


Properties of steel slab aggregate and steel slag asphalt concrete

ers).

1 Introduction

The possibility of using water cooled


steel slag to obtain a sized aggregate, suitable
for asphalt wearing course production, is
studied in this paper. For that purpose, suitability of slag as aggregate was tested in
laboratory and the asphalt mix type AC 11,
with 75% of slag and 25% of stone aggregate,
was designed. According to this mix design
asphalt plant was adjusted and, finally, the
asphalt was produced and placed as wearing
course at a test section.

Ferrous slags are the industrial byproducts coming from metallurgical process
of iron production (blast furnace slag) or steel
production (steel slag) which is, because of its
favourable physical and mechanical properties, almost fully used in various branches of
industry. If slag is used as raw material, it is
no longer necessary to store it on industrial
waste landfill sites, and lesser quantities of
mineral raw materials need to be extracted.
Slags are mostly used in the manufacture
of building materials, such as the road construction aggregate, concrete, railway ballast,
cement, mineral wool, etc. It is interesting to
note that even the old Romans used slag from
furnaces in the construction of Roman roads
in the Sussex District in England [1]. In the
USA slag is used from the first half of the 19th
century as road construction material, from
the second half of the 19th century as railway
ballast and in cement industry, and from the
beginning of the 20th century as aggregate for
bituminous mixtures [2].
Nowadays, according to the US Geological Survey data [3], 11.6 million tons of blast
furnace slag was manufactured in the US in
2006. 35.7 % of this quantity was used in
cement industry, and 34.3 % in road construction. In the same year, out of the total of 8.7
million tons of steel slag produced, 8.2 % was
used in cement industry, and as many as 63.1
% in the production of road construction
materials.
As per data [4] provided by the European
slag association (EUROSLAG), about 25
million tons of blast furnace slag was produced in Europe in 2004. Out of this quantity
64.0 % was used in cement industry, and 32.6
% in the production of road construction
materials. In the same year 15 million tons of
steel slag was produced. Only 1 % of that
quantity was used in cement industry, while
45 % was used in road construction (embankments, loose base courses, asphalt lay-

2 Test results
2.1 Test results of steel slag
aggregate
To assess whether slag is suitable for use
as aggregate in asphalt mixes, the laboratory
conducted slag testing in accordance with
HRN EN 13043, Aggregates for bituminous
mixtures and surface treatments for roads,
airfields and other trafficked areas [5].
This standard defines requirements for
aggregate, and hence for slag, with categories
according to individual aggregate properties.
Test results for slag as aggregate, and
relevant categories for individual properties,
are presented in Tables 1 to 10. Tests shown
in Tables 1 to 9 were conducted in the Stone
& Aggregate Laboratory of Institute IGH,
while the testing shown in Table 10 was made
in the Stone & Aggregate Laboratory of
Slovenian National Building and Civil Engineering Institute.

2.1.1 Geometrical properties of


steel slag aggregate
Although requirements and categories
for aggregate grading and fines content are
specified in HRN EN 13043, these properties
(although tested) were not analyzed in this
paper as they are dominantly dependent on
the technological process of crushing, screening, and dedusting.

Table 1. Particle shape of aggregates flakiness index, EN 933-3 [5] and shape index, EN 933-4 [6]
Overall flakiness
index

Category

Shape index

Category

FI

FI

SI

SI

4/8

FI10

SI15

8/16

FI10

SI15

Aggregate size
(mm)

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Fistri , M., Strineka, A., Roskovic, R.:


Properties of steel slab aggregate and steel slag asphalt concrete
Table 2. Determination of the flow coefficient of fine aggregates, EN 933-6 [7]
Aggregate size
(mm)
0/4

Flow coefficient of aggregates


Ecs (s)
18

Category
Ecs
Ecs38

2.1.2 Physical properties of steel slag aggregate


Table 3. Determination of resistance to wear (micro Deval), EN 1097-1 [8]
Aggregate size/
/test type

Particle size
fractions

8/16 mm/
/wet

10/11,2 mm:
30-40 %
11,2/14 mm:
70-30 %

Micro-Deval
koeficijent

Mean
value

Category

MDE

M DE

M DE

M DE 10

7,8
7,3

Table 4. Resistance to fragmentation by the Los Angeles test method, EN 1097-2 [9]
Aggregate size (mm)

Particle size fractions

Los Angeles
coefficient

Category

LA

LA

13

LA15

10/11,2 mm: 30 %

8/16

11,2/14 mm:70 %

Table 5. Particle density and water absorption, EN 1097-6 (Pyknometer method) [10]
Aggregate size
(mm)
0/4
4/8
8/16

Particle density
(Mg/m3)

Water absorption
(%)

ssd

rd

WA24

3,49
3,65
3,73

3,41
3,59
3,68

3,69
3,82
3,88

2,2
1,7
1,5

Table 6. Determination of the polished stone value, EN 1097-8 [11]


Mean polished stone value
PSV
70

Category
PSV
PSV68

2.1.3 Thermal and weathering properties of steel slag aggregate


Table 7. Determination of resistance to freezing and thawing according to EN 1367-1 [12] and by magnesium sulfate test according to EN 1367-2 [13]
Magnesium sulphate crystallization method
Particle size
Mean value
Category
fraction
(mm)
MS
MS
8/16

MS18

Freeze thaw test method


Mass loss

Category

(%)

0,4

F1

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Fistri , M., Strineka, A., Roskovic, R.:


Properties of steel slab aggregate and steel slag asphalt concrete
Table 8. Determination of resistance to thermal shock, EN 1367-5 [14]

Particle size
fraction (mm)

Mass loss

10-14 mm

0,4 %

Change in resistance to fragmentation


by Los Angeles test method
LA2
LA1
after thermal
before heating
shock
12,8
14,1

Loss in strength
(VLA= LA2-LA1)
1,3

Table 9. Determination of the affinity between aggregate (slag) and bitumen, EN 12697-11 [21]
Degree of bitumen coverage
(%)
after 6 h
after 24 h

Particle size fraction (mm)


8/11

95

90

2.1.3 Chemical properties of steel slag aggregate


Table 10. Volume stability of steel slag aggregate, EN 1744-1, 19.3 [15]
Type of steel slag
Steel slag cooled by water

Expansion
(% v/v)
2,2

2.2 Test results of asphalt


with steel slag aggregates
Test of the asphalt mix samples was
conducted and initial mix design was developed in the Asphalt Laboratory of INSTITUTE IGH for the asphalt mix type AC 11
with steel slag. The following constituents
were used in the asphalt mix production:
water-cooled steel slag, crushed rock aggregate of carbonate composition and sedimentary origin from Tounj Quarry (0/4 mm

Category of volume stability


V
V3,5

aggregate size), and "Japra" mineral filler of


carbonate composition. The road-construction
bitumen type 50/70 was used as binder.
Proportions of individual mineral components
in the designed asphalt type AB 11 (slag) are
shown in Table 11. The designed proportion
of bitumen was 5,3 [%(m/m)].
The asphalt plant was adjusted for production with these materials, and the asphalt
mix was produced based on the mix design.
This asphalt mix was placed at the test section
in August 2009.

Table 11. Mineral material fractions in the design asphalt mix


Mineral material

Fraction

JAPRA
TOUNJ
TROSKA
TROSKA
TROSKA

filler
0-4
0-4
4-8
8 - 11

2.2.1 Testing of asphalt mixtures


The asphalt mix samples taken at the asphalt plant during production were submitted
to the following laboratory testing:
soluble binder content (EN 12697-1)
[16];

Quantity in mix
[% (m/m)]
3,1
25,5
25,5
26,4
19,5

particle size distribution (EN 12697-2)


[17];
maximum density (EN 12697-5) [18];
bulk density of bituminous specimens
(EN 12697-6) [19];
air voids content, voids in the mineral
aggregate, voids in the mineral aggreg-

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Fistri , M., Strineka, A., Roskovic, R.:


Properties of steel slab aggregate and steel slag asphalt concrete

gate filled with binder (EN 12697-8)


[20];
water sensitivity (EN 12697-12 Method A Indirect tensile strength)
[22];
indirect tensile strength (EN 12697-23)
[24];

stiffness (EN 12697-26 Annex C)


[25];
stability and flow (EN 12697-34) [27].
Test results for asphalt mixtures are
shown in Tables 12 to 15.

"

#$

Figure 1. Particle size distribution of sampled mineral mixture


Table 12. Typical properties of steel slag asphalt mix
Soluble binder content
Bulk density of bituminous specimens
Maximum density
Void content
Voids in the mineral aggregate
Voids in the mineral aggreggate filled with binder

Test specimens for determination of water susceptibility of bituminous specimens


were prepared using Marshall compactor (EN
12697-30) with 2 x 35 blows.
Half of total number of specimens were
conditioned for 72 hours in temperature

[% (m/m)]
[kg/m]
[kg/m]
[% (v/v)]
[% (v/v)]
[% (v/v)]

5,1
2723
2894
5,9
19,5
69,7

chamber at 25 C, while the remaining


specimens were stored in water for 72 hours
at the temperature of 40 C. The tensile
strength was determined at 25 C.

Table 13. Test results of water sensitivity


Indirect tensile strength of dry
specimens
[MPa]

Indirect tensile strength of


wet specimens
[MPa]

1,6

1,3

The indirect tensile strength testing was


conducted at two testing temperatures: 25 C
and 5 C. Test specimens for this testing were

Indirect tensile strength ratio


[%]
80,0

prepared by 2 x 50 blows, using Marshall


compactor.

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Fistri , M., Strineka, A., Roskovic, R.:


Properties of steel slab aggregate and steel slag asphalt concrete
Table 14. Test results of indirect tensile strenght and stiffness modulus
Indirect tensile strength at 5 C

Indirect tensile strength at 25 C

Stiffness modulus

[MPa]

[MPa]

[MPa]

4,0

1,8

7128

The stiffness modulus was determined


by testing indirect tensile strength according
to HRN EN 12697-26. For this testing, six
specimens were prepared for each mix using
Marshall compactor (2 x 50 blows). The
testing was conducted at 20 C. The asphalt
mix test results are presented in Tables 12 to
15.
The water susceptibility testing of bitumen specimens was conducted according to
EN 12697-12 by tensile strength measurement. Twelve specimens were prepared for

Figure 2 Testing head for indirect tensile


strength test

testing with 2 x 35 blows using Marshall


compactor. Out of the total of twelve samples,
six were stored for 72 hours in temperature
chamber at 25 C, while the remaining six
specimens were stored in water for 72 hours
at the temperature of 40 C. The tensile
strength was determined at 25 C.
The indirect tensile strength testing was
conducted at two testing temperatures: 25 C
and 5 C. Twelve specimens were prepared
for this testing by 2 x 50 blows, using Marshall compactor.

Figure 3 Apparatus for stiffness modulus test

Determination of the stability, flow and the Marshall Quotient of Marshall specimens, was
performed according to EN 12697-34.
Table 15. Marshall test
Property

Unit

AB 11 (slag)

Stability

kN

15,2

Flow

mm

2,5

Marshall quotient

kN/mm

6,1

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Fistri , M., Strineka, A., Roskovic, R.:


Properties of steel slab aggregate and steel slag asphalt concrete

2.2.2 Testing properties of the


placed asphalt layer
In the IGH Asphalt laboratory the following tests of the placed asphalt layer were
conducted:
resistance to permanent deformation by
wheel - tracking test [23];
compaction degree;
thickness [28].
To enable the above testing, 200 and 100
mm samples were extracted by drilling from
the wearing course at the test section. Wheel
tracking was performed on samples 200 mm
in dia. using the Procedure B at ambient air
and at the temperature of 60C. The test result

is the rutting depth after the test specimen was


subjected to 20,000 passes of wheels.
Test conditions for wheel tracking:
wheel load: 700 N;
total distance of travel of tyre wheel
across the surface of test specimen: 230
mm;
frequency of loading: 26,5 cycles per
minute;
test temperature: 60 C;
number of load cycles: 10 000.
The compaction degree and thickness
testing was performed on specimens 100 mm
in diameter. Test results obtained in this
testing are shown in Tables 16 and 17.

Table 16. Wheel tracking test results


PROPERTY

AB 11 (SLAG)

Mean wheel-tracking slope, WTSAIR


Mean proportional rut depth, PRDAIR
Mean rut depth,
RDAIR

mm/1000 cycles
%
mm

0,09
5,7
2,7

rut depth vs. number of passes


AB 11 (SLAG)
5
4,5

Rut depth [mm]

4
3,5
3
2,5
2
1,5
1
0,5
0
0

1000

2000

3000

4000

5000

6000

7000

8000

9000 10000 11000 12000 13000 14000 15000 16000 17000 18000 19000 20000

Number of passes

Figure 2 Wheel tracking test results

Table 17. Results obtained by testing compaction degree and thickness of the placed asphalt layer
PROPERTY
Bulk density
Compaction degree
Layer thickness

(kg/m )
(%)
(mm)

AC 11 (SLAG)
2676
98,2
45,4

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Fistri , M., Strineka, A., Roskovic, R.:


Properties of steel slab aggregate and steel slag asphalt concrete

on the tested fractions, the water absorption was higher than 1 %,


mass losses during testing by the magnesium sulphate method and the freezing/thawing method are very small, and
the results obtained meet the highestcategory requirements for the durability
of aggregates,
the volume of slag is stable and, according to the expansion value, the slag
meets the highest volume stability requirements,
the adhesion of bitumen binder, tested
by method A, is 95 % after 6 hours, and
90 % after 24 hours.

3 Analysis of results
3.1 Results obtained by steel
slag aggregate testing
After analysis of laboratory test results
for the pre-crushed water cooled steel slag, it
was established that:
geometrical properties with respect to
shape index and flatness index meet
criteria for highest categories (FI10 ; SI
15),
resistance of slag to wear in wet state
complies with requirements for the
highest category (MDE10),
crushing resistance by Los Angeles
method meet requirements for the
highest category (LA15) and, after the
heat shock, the decrease in strength is
low, i.e. 1.3 (the value determined during the testing is 14.1 and is suitable for
the highest category),
polishing stone value is also adequate
for the highest category (PSV68),
density values are high, which was to
be expected considering the origin of
the aggregate,

3.2 Results obtained by testing asphalt containing


the steel slag aggregate
According to HRN EN 13108 - 1 (Bituminous mixes - Material specifications - Part
1: Asphalt concrete), the mix AC 11 with
steel slag can be classified, based on some of
the tested properties, into the following categories as shown in Table 18:

Table 18. Categories for mix AC 11 with steel slag


Test property

Category

Water sensitivity expressed by


indirect tensile strength ratio

Total number of categories for


selected property according to
EN 13108 - 1

ITSR80

2 of 5

Stiffness

Smin7000

6 of 14

Maximum wheel tracking slope

WTSAIR 0,10

4 of 12

Maximum proportional rut depth

PRDAIR 5,0

5 of 8

4 Conclusion
The results obtained by aggregate testing
shows that the aggregate produced from
water-cooled steel slag meets criteria for the
use in asphalt mixes. When compared with
aggregates produced from igneous rocks of
silicate composition that are used in asphalt
mixes on motorways and roads belonging to
highest traffic load categories, it can be
concluded that most properties of the slag
submitted to this testing are equally good. The
resistance to polishing is even much better
when compared to silicate rocks. Only the
water absorption value is somewhat higher

when compared to silicate rocks that are used


for aggregate production.
The test results of the asphalt mix and
placed asphalt layer shows that asphalt produced with steel slag aggregate has good
resistance to permanent deformation, high
stability with good flow properties and high
stiffness modulus. Samples also show high
stabilities, with good flow properties. The
higher stability and stiffness modulus of steel
slag asphalt mix can be used to design thinner
asphalt layers. Because good resistance to
polishing of steel slag particles, it can be
expected that asphalt with steel slag will have
very good skid resistance value (SRV), once

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Fistri , M., Strineka, A., Roskovic, R.:


Properties of steel slab aggregate and steel slag asphalt concrete

the bitumen film will be removed from its


surface.

References
[1] Emery, J.: Steel Slag Utilization in Asphalt
Mixes, National Slag Association, MF 186-1,
www.nationalslagassoc.org
[2] Lewis, D.W.: Properties and Uses of Iron and
Steel Slags. National Slag Association, MF
182-6, www.nationalslagassoc.org
[3] van Oss, H. G.: Slag Iron and Steel, U.S.
Geological Survey 2007 Minerals Yearbook,
minerals.usgs.gov
[4] The European Slag Association: Legal Status
of Slags, EUROSLAG, Position paper,
www.euroslag.org
[5] EN 13043
Aggregates for bituminous
mixtures and surface treatments for roads, airfields and other trafficked areas
[6] EN 933-4:2008 Tests for geometrical properties of aggregates -- Part 4: Determination of
particle shape -- Shape index
[7] EN 933-6:2006 Tests for geometrical properties of aggregates -- Part 6: Assessment of surface characteristics -- Flow coefficient of aggregates
[8] EN 1097-1:2004 Tests for mechanical and
physical properties of aggregates -- Part 1: Determination of the resistance to wear (microDeval)
[9] EN 1097-2:2007 Tests for mechanical and
physical properties of aggregates -- Part 2:
Methods for the determination of resistance to
fragmentation
[10] EN 1097-6:2007
Tests for mechanical
and physical properties of aggregates -- Part 6:
Determination of particle density and water
absorption
[11] EN 1097-8:2009
Tests for mechanical
and physical properties of aggregates -- Part 8:
Determination of the polished stone value
[12] EN 1367-1:2008
Tests for thermal and
weathering properties of aggregates -- Part 1:
Determination of resistance to freezing and
thawing
[13] EN 1367-2:2004
Tests for thermal and
weathering properties of aggregates -- Part 2:
Magnesium sulfate test

[14] EN 1367-5:2004
Tests for thermal and
weathering properties of aggregates -- Part 5:
Determination of resistance to thermal shock
[15] EN 1744-1:2004
Tests for chemical
properties of aggregates -- Part 1: Chemical
analysis
[16] EN 12697-1:2007
Bituminous mixtures - Test methods for hot mix asphalt -- Part 1:
Soluble binder content
[17] EN 12697-2:2008
Bituminous mixtures - Test method for hot mix asphalt -- Part 2: Determination of particle size distribution
[18] EN 12697-5:2009
Bituminous mixtures - Test methods for hot mix asphalt -- Part 5:
Determination of the maximum density
[19] EN 12697-6:2008
Bituminous mixtures - Test methods for hot mix asphalt -- Part 6:
Determination of bulk density of bituminous
specimens
[20] EN 12697-8:2003
Bituminous mixtures - Test methods for hot mix asphalt -- Part 8:
Determination of void characteristics of bituminous specimens
[21] EN 12697-11:2008
Bituminous mixtures - Test methods for hot mix asphalt -- Part 11:
Determination of the affinity between aggregate and bitumen
[22] EN 12697-12:2008
Bituminous mixtures - Test methods for hot mix asphalt -- Part 12:
Determination of the water sensitivity of bituminous specimens
[23] EN 12697-22:2008
Bituminous mixtures - Test methods for hot mix asphalt -- Part 22:
Wheel tracking
[24] EN 12697-23:2004
Bituminous mixtures - Test methods for hot mix asphalt -- Part 23:
Determination of the indirect tensile strength
of bituminous specimens
[25] EN 12697-26:2008
Bituminous mixtures - Test methods for hot mix asphalt -- Part 26:
Stiffness
[26] EN 12697-30:2008
Bituminous mixtures - Test methods for hot mix asphalt -- Part 30:
Specimen preparation by impact compactor
[27] EN 12697-34:2008
Bituminous mixtures - Test methods for hot mix asphalt -- Part 34:
Marshall test
[28] EN 12697-36:2003
Bituminous mixtures - Test methods for hot mix asphalt -- Part 36:
Determination of the thickness of a bituminous
pavement

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