Mechanisms in healing of bitumen and the impact of normal force

G. A. Leegwater, A. Scarpas, S. M.J.G. Erkens

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Damage in pavements is known to reduce over time when the material is left to rest, this phenomenon is known as healing. It has been shown that healing is an important influence factor in pavement performance. However, an accepted method to assess the healing capability of a pavement is currently not available. Healing of cracks is assumed to be the sum of two processes, cracked surfaces coming into contact (wetting) and strength gain of surfaces in contact (intrinsic healing). The paper describes influencing parameters of these two processes. The healing potential of bitumen is assessed using a novel test method. In this method two pieces of bitumen are brought together and left to heal under controlled conditions. After healing the amount of healing is assessed by testing the specimens using a direct tensile test. From the results it can be seen that normal force has a significant impact on the observed healing, indicating that the process of two surfaces coming into contact (wetting) has a significant impact on healing behavior of the bitumen.

Original languageBritish English
Pages (from-to)247-252
Number of pages6
JournalRILEM Bookseries
StatePublished - 2016


  • Bitumen
  • Healing test
  • Intrinsic healing
  • Wetting


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