Roadways are made up of aggregate materials (stone) held together with a binding agent (asphalt) engineered to withstand specified traffic loads for a desired time period. The asphalt binders age as they are exposed to sunlight, moisture, and temperature which cause it to oxidize and lose its binding properties. These changes, over time, will result in roadway deterioration and eventuallu, failure.
Regular maintenance extends the life of the roadway but ultimately, maintenance cannot provide the road quality (safety/ride) required. All roadways eventually require resurfacing or replacement to meet ongoing demand. During the rebuilding phase of the roadway lifecycle, the existing roadway asphalt and aggregate is partially (milled) or altogether removed. Historically, these removed materials have been discarded. Due to advances in technology-driven by an interest in sustainability and earth-friendly efforts, there is now an opportunity to economically recover and reuse these materials. This reclaimed material, called Reclaimed Asphalt Pavement / Recycled Asphalt Pavement (RAP), is combined with new asphalt and aggregate to meet roadway specifications once again. The RAP in this new roadway reduces the amount of required virgin asphalt and aggregate, saving both money and the environment.