What is bitumen?

Bitumen is a thick, black crude oil. It is a low-grade of crude oil which is composed of complex, heavy hydrocarbons. In an oil reservoir, it is a thick, viscous fluid and must be extracted from the ground.


In addition to their carcinogenic potential, epidemiological studies have shown that worker exposure to bituminous products and their emissions are linked to respiratory effects (asthma, chronic bronchitis, etc.)

Name coming from where?

A name given by the Roman writers to various hydrocarbons including asphalt and petroleum, mid-15c., from Latin “asphalt, mineral pitch,” probably, via Oscan or Umbrian, from Celtic *betu- “birch, birch resin” (compare Gaulish betulla “birch,” used by Pliny for the tree supposedly the source of bitumen)

Differences of bitumen and asphalt

It is the liquid binder that holds asphalt together. A sealed surface is a layer of sprayed and then covered with an aggregate. This is then repeated to give a two-coat seal. Asphalt is produced in a plant that heats, dries, and mixes aggregate, bitumen, and sand into a composite.

Classified  grade and types

  • Soft penetration Grade Bitumen

Penetration Grade Bitumen is producing from refinery, which is composed of different viscosity recognized as Petroleum Grade Bitumen. The penetration test is performed to identify the product, based on the hardness. This type is a standard bitumen regularly applied as a Paving Grade necessary for constructing roads and creating asphalt pavements with superior properties.

  • Hard oxidized Grades

Oxidized Bitumen (also known as Blown) grades are composed of crossing air through the penetration grades. This method provides the product with more elastic characteristics than its initial formula and makes it stricter. This type of has widely used in bituminous marine mastic manufacturing for the oil & gas pipeline joints. Also, to produce roofing felts, roofing and waterproofing businesses, electric cable joint protection joint filling compound, sound dampening felts and undercarriage sealant in the automotive industry, sealant aggregate, etc.  

  • Liquid cutback

In Cutback, a proper solution is applied to reduce viscosity. Cutback is precedented from the environmental perspective. The solvent from the bituminous substance will be vaporized, and the Bitumen will fix the aggregate. Cutback Bitumen is mostly applied for road construction and maintenance in cold weather.

  • Waterbase emulsion

Bitumen Emulsion is a liquefied with less viscosity. By scattering in water and supplementing an emulsifier, regular it turns into a short viscosity fluid that can efficiently be applied for different purposes, including reconditioning and repairing roads and waterproofing spraying. As this type is fluid, there is no need to heat it before implementation.

  • PMB Polymer Modified
Polymer modified bitumen (PMB) is (asphalt) combined with one or more polymer materials. This modification is done with the aim of enhancing the mechanical properties of the bitumen material.
  • VG Viscosity grade

Viscosity Grade (Asphalt) is a grade frequently applied as a Paving Grade, and it’s proper for road making and the asphalt pavements constructing with premier properties. VG Bitumen is ordinarily used in making hot mix asphalt. Viscosity testing is more precise compare to penetration testing. The higher the number of the grade, the tougher the Bitumen.

  • PB performance grade

Performance Grade (PG) is graded based on its performance in extreme hot and cold temperatures. The basic purpose of picking asphalt binders using the PG method is to guarantee that the binder has suitable environmental conditions. PG asphalt binders are set to meet predicted climatic situations plus traffic rush and volume adjustments.


Bituminous materials are used for road construction, roofing, waterproofing, and other applications. For the main application, which is road construction, the major concerns, as with concrete, are cost and durabilit