Caitlin Moran
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New Type of Asphalt De-Ices Itself During Winter

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Winter Driving myths snow cold icy road outdoors

A new type of asphalt de-ices itself during the winter, making road salt obsolete

With winter weather comes winter road salt. While snow and ice itself are gorgeous to look at, the ice-melting salt that comes with can be destructive to not only our cars, but our environment as well. Throughout the winter, salt must be reapplied to increase everyone’s safety, harming the environment in the process. But it looks like the frequent use of salt might change sometime soon.

A team of scientists at Turkey’s Koc University have created a new form of asphalt that can de-ice itself during the winter. This new asphalt mixture has combined the salt potassium formate with a hydrophobic (a.k.a water repelling) polymer, which is known as styrene-butadiene-styrene.

The team, which is led by Dr. Seda Kizilel, then mixed these chemicals with bitumen, the main binding ingredient in asphalt, creating a composite material that is just like regular bitumen with an added benefit—it significantly delays the formation of ice on its surface.

During the testing, this new material proved itself to melt ice for a period of two months. According to the study, the asphalt will last for much longer on the actual road.

This winter, I think I’ll take an order of asphalt, hold the road salt. Thanks.

News Source: Gizmag

A born-and-raised Jersey girl, Caitlin Moran has somehow found herself settled in Edinburgh, Scotland. When she’s not spending her days trying to remember which side of the road to drive on, Caitlin enjoys getting down and nerdy with English. She continues to combine her love of writing with her love of cars for The News Wheel, while also learning more about the European car market—including the fact that the Seat brand is pronounced “se-at” not “seat” as you might think. See more articles by Caitlin.