Term of Award

Spring 2024

Degree Name

Master of Science, Civil Engineering

Document Type and Release Option

Thesis (restricted to Georgia Southern)

Copyright Statement / License for Reuse

Digital Commons@Georgia Southern License


Department of Civil Engineering and Construction

Committee Chair

Junan Shen

Committee Member 1

Soonkie Nam

Committee Member 2

Xiaoming Yang


This thesis explores the impact of different modifiers on the phase-changing properties and performance grade of asphalt binders at high and intermediate temperatures. The primary focus is on understanding how phase-changing materials (PCMs) like Styrene-Butadiene-Styrene (SBS), Lignin, and Ground Tire Rubber (GTR) influence the physical, chemical, and performance characteristics of asphalt binders, aiming to enhance their durability against temperature-induced stresses such as rutting and thermal cracking and make a correlation between phase changing properties and performance grade. This study utilizes two base asphalt binders, PG 64-22 and PG 76-22, and modifies the binder with SBS, Lignin, and GTR. Through an extensive experimental setup involving aging processes (Rolling Thin Film Oven (RTFO) and Pressure Aging Vessel (PAV)) and a series of both traditional and advanced tests (including Dynamic Shear Rheometer, Rotational Viscometer, Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy, and others), a comprehensive dataset of 51 samples is analyzed. The research findings demonstrate a significant impact of the modifiers on the rheological and thermal properties of the asphalt binders. Notably, modifiers like SBS significantly improve the resistance to rutting and thermal cracking, indicating their potential to extend the lifespan of asphalt pavements. Moreover, the study underscores the correlation between the phase-changing properties (specific heat and heat of combustion) and the performance grade of the asphalt binders, suggesting a novel approach to asphalt pavement design that considers thermal energy storage and transfer capabilities. By establishing a correlation between phase-changing properties and performance grades, the research offers valuable insights for developing more durable and climate-resilient asphalt pavements, underscoring the importance of selecting appropriate modifiers based on their thermal and rheological benefits.

OCLC Number


Research Data and Supplementary Material