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Bitumen History

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Bitumen is a mixture of Organic Liquids that are highly Viscous, Black, Sticky, Entirely Soluble in Carbon Disulfide, and composed primarily of highly condensed Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons. Bitumen is an oil based substance. It is a semi-solid hydrocarbon product, produced by removing the lighter fractions (such as liquid petroleum gas, petrol and diesel) from heavy crude oil during the refining process.Naturally occurring or crude bitumen is a sticky, tar-like form of petroleum which is so thick and heavy that it must be heated or diluted before it will flow. At room temperature, it is much like cold molasses. Refined Bitumen is the residual (bottom) fraction obtained by fractional distillation of crude oil. It is the heaviest fraction and the one with the highest boiling point, boiling at 525 °C (977 °F).The vast majority of refined bitumen is used in construction: primarily as a constituent of products used in paving and roofing applications. According to the requirements of the end use bitumen is produced to specification. This is achieved either by refining process or blending.It is estimated that the current world use of bitumen is approximately 102 million tones per year. Approximately 85% of all the bitumen produced is used as the binder in asphalt for roads. It is also used in other paved areas such as airport runways, car parks and footways.Typically, the production of asphalt involves mixing sand, gravel and crushed rock with bitumen, which acts as the binding agent.