The first Dutch fossil free road
Called Harsfalt, a biobased and fossil fuel free asphalt alternative has been used to create two pieces of trial road in the Netherlands.
Asphalt concrete is a composite material used commonly used to surface roads and parking lots. It consists of mineral aggregates mixed with bitumen, which is derived from fossil fuels.
In Harsfalt, the bitumen is replaced with a mix of organic oils, resin and lignin derived from Miscanthus. Most ingredients are locally sourced and some are waste products from paper production and the timber industry.
Harsfalt looks the same as normal asphalt, and can be applied using a normal asphalt mixer. The mixer can be put on a. lower setting, 125 degrees Celsius instead of the normal 165.
The material has now been applied in two areas in the Netherlands, in the municipalities of Assen and Oude IJsselstreek, 300 meters in total. The expectation is that the biobased asphalt will function comparably or even better than traditional asphalt concrete.
The project is a collaboration between several road building companies, Mourik Infra, NTP, Versluys Groep, Vermeulen Groep en ReintenInfra. The raw materials were supplied by Esha and Miscancell. Asfalt Kennis Centrum will monitor the trial roads for four years.
Photos: AKC / Vermeulen Groep