What is Porous Asphalt Pavement?

Porous Asphalt Pavement is a type of Asphalt. Asphalt is a black, sticky substance that occurs naturally but can also be refined from crude oil. Blacktop, also referred to as asphalt concrete, is a mixture of sand, stone, and gravel used in the construction of roads and pavements. Asphalt pavement is the most preferred way of building roads as it is cheap, durable, and doesn’t take much time to complete. Actually, more than 90 percent of the paved surface (roads, parking lots, driveways, airport runways, etc.) in the United States are made of asphalt pavement. Asphalt pavement’s superiority to its alternatives is exhibited by its quiet, smooth ride, environmental friendliness, and speed of construction.

Typically, pavements are designed to allow runoff water — from rainfall or elsewhere — to flow along the surface and drain into a nearby ditch or water catchment area. Porous asphalt pavement is a type of pavement structure specially designed to allow runoff water to seep through the surface into an underlying recharge bed where it will gradually percolate into the soil.

What Does A Porous Asphalt Pavement Look Like?

Surfaces made from porous asphalt are almost identical to those made from standard asphalt. The only difference is that porous asphalt pavement is a little coarser, but the surface is still smooth enough to meet the requirements of the ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act). It’s actually very hard for a regular person to tell the difference.

What Is The Lifespan Of A Porous Asphalt Pavement?

What is the lifespan of a porous asphalt pavement and most importantly, for how long will the surface remain porous? This is a question that many people considering porous asphalt find themselves asking. The answer to both questions is a very long time. Porous asphalt surfaces are built to last for decades. In most cases, a porous asphalt pavement will be showing little to no cracks/potholes at all twenty years after construction. Their ability to retain water lasts even longer.

The use of porous asphalt in the construction of pavements has been applauded by government agencies around the world as an alternative practice to runoff control and storm water management. In the United States, the National Environmental Protection Agency (NEMA) recognizes porous asphalt as a sustainable way of protecting streams, replenishing aquifers, and promoting infiltration thus reducing runoff to conserve rainwater.

Sources

https://www.fhwa.dot.gov/pavement/pub_details.cfm?id=948

http://www.asphaltpavement.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=507&Itemid=1122

http://www.asphaltpavement.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=27&Itemid=66

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