Back to basics: An innovative approach to road rehabilitation
Driven by a commitment to keep the Australian pavement recycling industry at the forefront of global innovation, one Australian company is setting examples by making the most of existing resources through a sustainable insitu road recycling process.
Stabilised Pavements of Australia (SPA) is an Australian-owned company that has become a leading specialist stabilisation contractor in Australasia. Commencing in Australia in 1984, the company has been providing road recycling services for local government and state road authorities, non-council and private customers and has expanded overseas to operate internationally.
In early 2020, SPA launched a new subsidiary division called Pavement Recyclers to specifically focus on delivering Paver Laid Insitu Recycling – a technique based on rehabilitating the existing road pavement materials onsite, using the Wirtgen 380 (W380) Cold Recycler from Germany.
A first of its kind in Australia, Pavement Recyclers’ operations occur in just one pass of the forward moving train, including milling, recycling, material management and placement. Alongside many improved features on current conventions, the single pass, paver laid aspect is a key difference compared to other recycling methods used in Australia.
General Manager David Berg says by introducing the brand Pavement Recyclers, the company aimed to bring attention to the significance of this latest development in the road rehabilitation industry.
“Stabilisation is used worldwide to improve the engineering characteristics of pavement material and is frequently selected by road asset managers because of the sustainability benefits that are often relied upon when pavements are in urgent need for rehabilitation. Pavement Recyclers’ new plant and process delivering recycled pavements is a game-changer as it improves the efficiency of the process. The new brand was a way for us to emphasise that recycling of pavements is what stabilisation is. A fundamental benefit of the process, essential for many of Australia’s rural roads where shoulder failures are prominent, is that the Wirtgen 380 Cold Recycler allows Pavement Recyclers to simultaneously widen the roads while rehabilitating them,” Berg says.
“The recycler machine showcases a full working width of 3.8 metres. When paired with the paver screed capable of extending even further, this allows recycling to occur, depending on the project, in a single pass across full lane widths, multiple lanes or with simultaneous shoulder widening. The machine also doubles up as the world’s largest profiler,” he adds.