What is Natural Asphalt ?

What is Natural Asphalt ?

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In this article from Nikan west company the gilsonite producer in Iran, we will introduce you to Natural Asphalt and natural bitumen and we will answer any questions that may arise in your mind.

Natural bitumen is a black body made from a large number of hydrocarbons, which are combined into a colloidal system, and also contains sulfuric and oxygenated hydrocarbons. By heating the natural bitumen, the dough hardens to loose and watery and dissolves in mineral oils.

Natural bitumen is sticky and the grains of stone stick to each other, that is, it is used in making black asphalt surfaces. Water does not seep into the natural bitumen, so they seal buildings with it.

Many of you may know natural bitumen only on asphalt or roof and floor insulation in some places and no longer have information about how bitumen is formed and its other uses. Also, be aware of the ingredients.

 What is native or Natural Asphalt and gilsonite

What is Native or Natural Asphalt?

Native or natural asphalt is referred to as solid natural bitumen, also known as asphaltite, and is different from other bitumen due to its unique properties.

At a time when crude oil had grown and transported to the earth’s surface over millions of years, it appeared as crystals near the earth’s surface. Geographically, this valuable and useful material has been discovered for the first time in Utah, USA, as well as in western Iran, Kermanshah and Ilam provinces, and it is more durable than petroleum bitumen.

Such natural bitumen may exist in pure form in nature (lake bitumen) such as Behbahan Iran bitumen lake and American Trinidad bitumen lake or extracted from mines (mineral bitumen or Gilsonite mine). Bitumen is also known as Uintaite.

This type of material’s appearance is in the form of glossy and black lumps and it has high solubility in organic soluble materials, high purity, high molecular weight, stable properties and high nitrogen. This type has a degree of softness between 130 to 250 degrees Celsius and is used in many applications such as asphalt and road construction.

At the time of its formation naturally, after the evaporation of light crude oil materials, due to factors such as temperature, time and processes such as reaction with sulfur, oxidation, polymerization, condensation of this material into a viscous or solid liquid. Come on. These types are semi-solid in liquid form and brittle lumps in solid state. Natural asphalt powder or bitumen are classified into a natural asphalt lake and rock: Lake bitumen and Rock Bitumen.

Other names of bitumen

In fact, Bitumen is a hydrocarbon resin that is formed from the conversion of crude oil over time and the evaporation of its volatile substances in nature in the long run. There is a unit and the first bitumen in the world was found in that area. You may also want to know about the names of bitumen. In addition to bitumen, this material is also known by various other names, which will include the following:

  • Uintaite
  • Asphalt
  • Asphaltite
  • Natural asphalt
  • Decorative asphalt
  • Bentonite

Natural bitumen, like natural asphalt, is soluble in some materials such as aliphatic and aromatic, and due to its compatibility, it is also used to thicken and harden petroleum derivatives that have a dilute state.

Read more: Natural Asphalt Lake

What are the Four Main Types of Asphalt?


The type of cover layer on the surface of the passages can be easily selected according to the volume of traffic in which the passage is done 24 hours a day and the type of soil. But sometimes the choice of natural asphalt price can be so complex that it has to be chosen based on heavy research and research.

As mentioned at the beginning, natural asphalt chemical composition coating is divided into several different categories of hot, cold and protective based on its mixing and use, and in this section we will describe each of them:

Hot Asphalt

One of the types of natural asphalt is the hot type and it is called a group of coatings that are mixed with hot bitumen and should be used hot to spread and compact it. This type of asphalt is one of the most widely used and familiar types of coatings used for asphalting roads and roads. Basically, 90% of this coating is made of stone materials, so it can be said that the stone materials in this coating can have a significant impact on the quality of hot asphalt.

This type of natural asphalt chemical composition can be used in different parts. In fact, this coating can be used on the floor of passages, airport floors and the roofs of some buildings. Meanwhile, among the types of hot asphalts, the best type in terms of strength and durability is asphalt concrete.

Natural asphalt concrete is obtained from a combination of high quality and broken stones and pure bitumen. It is worth mentioning that natural asphalt concrete can be used in all applications such as road paving and airport runways because it will be more durable against bad weather conditions or high traffic.

Protective Asphalt

This type of natural asphalt chemical composition, like hot asphalt, consists of crushed aggregates with a special type of bitumen, which differs from hot asphalt in the size of the aggregates in it, and the main purpose of making this type of asphalt is only to protect The desired range.

The main use of this Gilsonite natural asphalt is to cover the roof surface of structures as a coating for isogamy and to prevent damage to it or passages that have less dead and live load on it. It is worth mentioning that the resistance of this type of asphalt is not high and the percentage of bitumen in it is higher.

This type of Gilsonite natural asphalt can be produced by combining aggregates with water bitumen or soluble bitumen. When combining it with water bitumen, the aggregates must first be kept somewhat moist, but to combine rock materials with bitumen. The solution of the stone reformer in it must be completely dry. Cold asphalt mixtures produced using high-concentration soluble bitumen such as MC-3000 and SC-3000 should generally be mixed with hot bitumen at temperatures above 95 ° C with the desired bitumen and should be The same temperature should be spread and compressed.

Cold Asphalt

This Gilsonite natural asphalt is actually a combination of bitumen emulsion with stone materials, which is called Cold Mix in specialized terms. The remarkable point in producing this type of asphalt coating is that it is produced at ambient temperature and provides the contractor with the ability to run at ambient temperature.

In some types, manufacturers may heat the bitumen as needed, but other composite materials can be mixed with the bitumen without heating.

Hot Asphalt Mix

Hot asphalt is a mixture of stone materials and pure bitumen which, depending on the type of granulation and bitumen used, is prepared at a temperature between at least 105 to maximum 163 degrees Celsius in an Gilsonite

natural asphalt factory and within the same temperature on prepared road surfaces such as reinforced pavement. ,Basis, various hot and cold natural asphalt coatings and concrete surfaces are spread and pounded.

In the group of hot natural asphalt mixtures, asphalt concrete is the most excellent, strongest and most durable type, which is obtained by mixing high quality and broken stone materials with regular and continuous granulation and pure bitumen, while exercising strict control and supervision in all stages of production.

Gilsonite natural asphalt concrete can be used in all different layers of road paving and in any weather and traffic conditions, without any restrictions, while in similar conditions, the use of other types of hot asphalt with discrete, open or regular granulation has many restrictions.

The Difference Natural Asphalt and Natural Bitumen

Natural Asphalt and Natural Bitumen are almost identical in function; The difference is that there are small differences in the dose of the ingredients in them. For example, natural asphalt has less than one percent sulfur; However, the amount of sulfur in mineral bitumen is usually more than three percent. More specifically, California bitumen with 3.9 percent, Trinidad bitumen with 3.8 percent and Mexican bitumen with 3.2 percent sulfur are mined. Iran is rich in natural bitumen reserves in the world.

Another point about the difference between natural asphalt and bitumen is their purity. We have already said that one of the signs of Gilsonite producer is that it is low in impurities. Mineral bitumen typically contains a variety of mineral impurities, including ash. This type of bitumen has about one percent ash. Also, the rate of acidification and saponification of petroleum bitumen is less than natural bitumen and finally bitumen is more than natural asphalt.

Read more: Introduction of natural bitumen features and types

What is a Natural Asphalt Lake?

Some of the strangest lakes in the world are not filled with water but with natural asphalt resource and bitumen, the same materials used to pave roads. A large part of the with asphalt natural resource used today is derived from oil, but asphalt is also found naturally in nature.

Sometimes they seep out of the ground and form large pits called bitumen pits or a natural asphalt lakes. These with asphalt natural resource are also sometimes found in sand dunes, as is the case with the Lake Athabasca oil sands of northeastern Alberta, Canada, which is the world’s largest reservoir of bitumen. Natural asphalt is also known as an eruption of underwater volcanoes, but this is rare and was only discovered in 2003.

How is Asphalt Made?

Generally, this type of asphalt is a material that has been produced underground, under pressure, for millions of years. This material rises to the surface and boils out for various reasons, including fractures that occur at different levels of the earth’s crust, resulting in the formation of a natural asphalt lake.

Failure at different levels of the earth also occurs due to natural disasters such as earthquakes and landslides; But as we said, few countries have access to such asphalt natural resources. Canada, Iraq, Australia, Venezuela and Russia, enjoys natural asphalt.

If you want to know more about gilsonite and gilsonite mine , please read this article. Moreover, all you need to know about Natural Asphalt Lake is here.

If you want to know more about the gilsonite powder , gilsonite price , bitumen and walnut shell powder price follow Nikan west company the biggest gilsonite producer in Iran, on Instagram.

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