Bitumen Introduction


Do you know what Bitumen is? Or do you know other names of Bitumen around the world?

Generally, Bitumen is a black or dark-colored, solid, semi-solid, dense, amorphous, and cementitious product. It can be found in rock asphalt, Gilsonit (Natural Bitumen or Mineral Bitumen), Tar, and bitumen derived from oil as petroleum bitumen.

Nowadays, most of the roads in the world are paved by bitumen. The world’s needs are more than 100 million tons per year which are approximately 700 million barrels of bitumen.

Bitumen has different modes:

                        Complex form: This form of Bitumen can be easily broken into pieces.

            Semi-hard form: This form of Bitumen is something between complex form and soft form.

Mild form: Most kinds of this form is viscous materials which present in Tar Sands. Moreover, Petroleum processing is another way to obtain Bitumen.

In this manner, bitumen is essentially residue yielded thru the distillation petroleum process. In addition, condensate is obtained from the processing of Coal, Petroleum, Oil-Shale, Wood, or other Organic materials. Whenever Tar is distilled partially, we have Pitched, so that the volatile components have evaporated.

            Types of Bitumen:

                        Various types of Bitumen are available that mentioned below:


                                    Oxidized or Blown Asphalt


                                    Polymer Modified Bitumen (PMB)

                                    Performance Grade



            Generally, Bitumen is called asphalt. For instance, in Europe and North America, Bitumen means liquid binder, asphalt, or asphalt cement, respectively.

Is there any difference between Bitumen and Asphalt??

            The answer is yes. Bitumen and asphalt differences are listed as below:

Bitumen plays a liquid binder role that holds asphalt pieces together. In other words, Bitumen can be used in Bitumen – Asphalt combination.

Natural asphalt is a mixture of bitumen and sand; this mix has smoother and durable results in road construction.

The composite mix of bitumen and sand is applied through a paving machine as a solid material at a nominated place with specified thickness by the user.

            From past to present, asphalt and bitumen are used instead of each other in meaning. In American English, the heavy refined products from distillation tower and crude oil are usually called Asphalt or Asphalt cement. Although outside the United States this product is often called Bitumen. Geologists around the world commonly prefer to use bitumen for nature varieties.

            A more common slang term for the word Bitumen is ‘Tar’, which is derived from the name of La Brea Tar Pits. Natural Asphalt is sometimes defined by the Crude Bitumen (or Refined Bitumen) obtained from the distillation of crude oil at high temperature (525 or 977).

            The primary use of bitumen is road paving. Also, it’s used in waterproofing products, production of roofing flat, and roof insulation. Crude bitumen is the leading source for Tar sands’ petroleum production. The topic mentioned above is currently under development in Alberta, Canada.


General Information

            In the past, people used bitumen to waterproof boats and construction combine with special additives. “Hot bitumen was used as mortar in the Babylon walls. Also, it’s able to be done that the Carthage town was easily burnt due to the extensive use of Bitumen in construction.” Herodotus, Greek historian, says. Moreover, some people use bitumen in basic photographic technology. Research has shown that using bitumen on pewter plates and shining light on these, creates a black and white image.

            Furthermore, numerous computers use bitumen plates to silence different parts of the computer, such as Hard Drives, and high-end dishwashers to provide sound isolation.



            The world and the worlds are terrified of climate change due to the effects of greenhouse gases, especially Carbon Dioxide. These gases are released by burning fossil fuels in the atmosphere. This matter has led the world to use an alternative, non-toxic, environmentally friendly, and renewable materials such as Sugar, Molasses, Rice, Corn, and Potato Starch.

            Non-petroleum bitumen can be produced in light colors. Nowadays, light-colored asphalts are used to paving roads in developed countries like Qatar. These types of roads absorb less heat from solar radiation. The more important thing about this matter is that they don’t heat up as much as the dark surfaces.


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