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When innovation combines with improvement. The Marini MAP 260 asphalt plant of Adige Bitumi Group in Friola (VI), Italy.

Innovation and vitality

Innovation is the first sign of a company’s vitality and its desire to satisfy the client’s demands by proposing technological solutions which respect both the environment and the health and safety of the operators

In well-developed markets, the most innovative companies are the ones which are able to recognize new opportunities, and discern the incipient needs or simply identify the needs which are not adequately satisfied by other companies.

There is no doubt that the asphalt business constitutes one of the most mature markets. However, thanks to continuing technical innovations made by road building companies, often with the backing of major Universities, road machinery manufacturers and chemical industries, interesting work opportunities have ensued, linked with innovative asphalt production.

Mixes with high RAP content are increasingly frequent, together with low temperature mixes, foam bitumen, modified bitumen, fibres and much more.

To meet these new demands, Marini has developed new subsystems which can be fitted onto existing plants, meaning that even older models can be remarkably rejuvenated.

The retrofitting of the asphalt plant MAP 260

One of the most significant examples of Marini’s successful intervention is the MAP 260 plant belonging to the Adige Bitumen Group in Friola, Vicenza.

Installed in 1997 on the site of Friola di Pozzoleone, it has been progressively modified and modernized to face new work challenges.

In 2004 the screen surface was increased from 783 m2 to 1096 m2 to upgrade the filtering process with consequent increase in fines recovery and improved temperature control at filter entrance.

In 2007 the cold feeders increased from 7 to 10 to satisfy the increasing requirements of the authorities and customers alike and to ensure maximum work flexibility using new asphalt mixes developed over the years.

With the constant development of new technologies, the Adige Bitumen Group found it had to install a special production unit to manage the RAP arriving from various road sites.

A plant at Sarcedo

So alongside the Friola production site, a plant at Sarcedo, Vicenza, was created to treat the RAP arriving from various road sites. The RAP is deposited on an ecological asphalt platform before being treated in the adjacent 2010 plant.

Thanks to its totally waterproof surface, the meteoric water is collected and fed into a plant with the following phases: collection, de-sanding, de-greasing and discharge.

The various selected piles of RAP are covered for protection and to limit moisture content, improve the quality of the material and ensure consistent energy savings during the work cycle.

The Sarcedo plant not only recovers waste but is designed to operate with aggregates (recycled and non recycled) and cement mixes, and possesses an active quarry licence which runs until 2023.

Like the Sarcedo site, the Friola plant has an ecological platform for storing RAP in covered piles.

To recover and reuse the RAP, in addition to the classical hot recycling line supplied in 1997, a line for cold RAP feed was installed at the beginning of 2016.

The RAP is opportunely treated and selected, then weighed and fed directly into the mixer. Through contact with the virgin aggregates, which are heated up to a high temperature, the heat exchange is sufficient to dry out the RAP. This equal temperature  distribution throughout the various materials guarantees, once the bitumen has been added, the production of high quality, workable asphalts ready to be laid.

Cybertronic 500

Additionally, in 2016 the latest version of Cybertronic 500 software was installed for improved, easier management and more accurate formula selection. This new software means that the Marini MAP 260 plant is more precise than models produced in the same period and can be equalled to the latest generation plants.

Nowadays additives in the bitumen have an increasingly important role to play in the latest generation asphalt mixes. Thanks to the new Cybertronic 500 software, the metering is performed through a gravimetric system directly into the bitumen supply. This innovation ensures an accurate additive feed into the formula in use.

For greater flexibility, two separate metering lines have been installed.

In conclusion, as a result of these operations, the Adige Bitumen Group has once again proved to be able to guarantee a constantly high-quality product and greater flexibility in production, with increased customer satisfaction. At the same time, there is reduced consumption of un-renewable raw materials and all in a more Eco-friendly way!

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