Gilwilly Industrial Estate Penrith Cumbria. UK CA11 9BQ
Tel: +44 (0) 1768 865302 Fax: +44 (0) 1768 890954


Asphalt Testing Equipment

Many Quality Assurance aspects including production control, efficient materials usage and compliance with mix designs are dependant upon the effective analysis of bituminous mixtures. There are a wide range of test which are carried out. It is important that the correct design and physical testing of these mixtures is achieved if good quality pavements are to be constructed with minimum maintenance and economical production.

Temperature, mixing, compaction and physical testing all contribute to the design of a suitable bituminous mixture. Traditionally procedures evolved around the Marshall method of mix design used in the USA. Here in the UK an alternative test method has been developed more suited to the materials available in the UK. The US and UK methods utilise similar techniques with some variations in the equipment used for the tests.

Modern developments in mixture designs tend to be more specific to characteristics of the mix under repetitive load conditions such as permanent deformation and elastic stiffness. This in turn has led to the development of a range of mix design equipment for use on both laboratory mould samples and field cores.

Materials Testing Equipment Ltd offer a sophisticated range of testing equipment complying with the various test methods, ensuring that accurate and consistent test results are always obtained.

The Marshall method of mix design and evaluation can be broken down to seven distinct areas with specific equipment available for each step;

The equipment featured below forms only a fraction of the equipment we have to offer. For details of equipment not featured on this page please CONTACT US for further information.

Special Feature

Factors that affect the design and performance of surface dressings:

Road Hardness Probe

The hardness of a roads surface directly affects the extent that the applied chippings become embedded into the road surface during the life of the surface dressing.

The mothod of measuring the road hardness on site is by way of the Road Hardness Probe as described in road note 39. Read more in our mini feature about Road Hardness

40-34106 Road Hardness Probe with carry case


The constituents of the mix and compaction mould assemblies should be uniformly heated to the required temperature. As an example a 50 pen bitumen would require a temperature of 235oC

Ovens & Incubators

Heavy Duty Ovens and incubators. 11 Standard sizes : 200 to 1250 Litre Available in Single or Double door styled units

  • Safety Thermostat with Indicator
  • Mechanical Convection
  • Direct Reading Controls

70-09508 Oven 225Ltr (8cuft) complete with fan and dial gauge thermometer

Therma Series Thermometers

55-17040 The Therma Series of hand held K type thermocouple digital thermometers offer an operating range of -49.9oC to 1000oC in intervals of 0.1oC or 1oC and a variety of probes and thermocouples are available for use with the Therma Series.`

Non Contact Thermometers

850-1, Optical LED spot marker for Short distance non contact measurement.

850-2, Optical laser spot marker for long distance non contact measurement

For temperature monitoring, view a selection of our wide range of thermometers displayed under Temperature Monitoring & Measurement Equipment


Once the constituents of the mix are uniformly heated they can be mixed for each batch. Care should be taken to ensure the constituents are mixed thoroughly and the specimen is at the correct temperature for compaction. The mixer bowl temperature should be regulated using a thermostatically controlled isomantle heater.

Once mixed the specimens can be compacted in progressively increasing or decreasing order of binder content.


80-13100 Mixer, 5 Litre. Hobart type N50 5 litre mixing machine. Suitable for use with an isomantle to heat samples of asphalt. Also suitable for mixing soil and mortar samples.

80-13120 Mixer, 8 Litre. 8 litre mixing machine


80-13110 Isomantle 5Ltr 240v 50Hz.

Suitable for maintaining a constant temperature in asphalts during the mixing process. For temperature monitoring, view some of our thermometers under Temperature Monitoring & Measurement Equipment

For different voltages and capacities please call.


Once a pre-heated mould assembly has filed with the bituminous mixture, compaction is the next stage. 50 blows are applied by means of either a manual or automatic compacting hammer at a rate of 60 blows per minute. After turning the mould a further 50 blows are applied to the bottom of the specimen before it is cooled in cold water for at least ten minutes.

Marshall Mould

40-11020 Marshall Mould, Complete. To BS 598 Pt 3. Comprises of mould body, baseplate and combination collar for filling/extracting.

Automatic Compactor

40-11150 Marshall Automatic Compaction Machine to BS 598 Pt 107.

Using an automatic compaction machine enables consistent and repeatable samples to be produced. Comprising of a pedestal and Mechanical hammer assembly this unit offers durability and safe working. The control panel incorporates a mains indicator, start and stop buttons and a direct reading blow counter. During operation the compactor counts down to zero. Dual rammer pick ups are used to reduce the stresses on the internal mechanism ensuring a long life.

Available in:

  • 220 - 240 V, 50 Hz, single phase
  • 110 - 120 V, 60 Hz, single phase

Spares kits & accessories readily available

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Marshall Compaction Apparatus - Manual

Use of manual compaction methods require a suitable sturdy pedestal, a compaction hammer, mould clamp and hammer guide. Materials Testing Equipment Ltd offer apparatus suitable for both BS and ASTM test methods. For full details please contact us

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Marshall Compaction Machine - Gyratory

Differing methods of compacting bituminous mixtures have been used over the years. The Marshall test method has been the most widely adopted, but local variations exist across the world.

Traditionally laboratory mixes have been compacted using the impact method. This method, can be unsatisfactory and may lead to the crushing of larger Aggregate particles . The Gyratory Compactor developed within the past 5 years simulates the action of a roller and the material compacted is therefore more representative of the material laid and compacted on site.

Gyratory Compaction has evolved from the need to tightly control the voids within a sample and control costs. This method is being specified more often and is particularly suited for preparation of samples for subsequent inspection of elastic stiffness and determination of pavement deformation. For more details on the Gyratory Compaction Method, please contact us

Extrude & Store

After compaction of the samples, they can marked for identification and be extruded from the mould for storing at ambient temperature until testing.

Sample Extruder

75-25125 Sample Extruder for use with BS Compaction and CBR Moulds

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80-33465 Crayon - Road Marking. Yellow supplied in packs of 12. Other colours available upon request

80-33460 Crayon - Road Marking. Paint Stick Type, white. Other colours available upon request. Supplied individually.

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Ambient Storage. Materials Testing Equipment Ltd can offer solutions for the effective and safe storage of samples. We offer a range of equipment from suitable benches through to bolt free racking systems. For more details on staorage, please contact us


With help of a balance and an Air/Water frame the relative density and compacted Aggregate density can be calculated prior to testing of the samples.

Air/Water Frame

50-90020 Frame for Air/Water Weighing. Complete with accessories for under bench weighing. BALANCE NOT INCLUDED


Balance, Electronic suitable for Air/Water Weighing. Complete with under bench weighing facility. Various models and capacities available depending upon individual requirements


Immediately before testing, Marshall samples should be immersed in water at 60oC for 45 to 75 minutes. The breaking head should be brought to the same temperature.

Heated Water Bath

80-31540 Water Bath, Heated 48 litre with stainless steel tank, bridge and internal shelf. Housed in a sturdy steel outer case. Complete with temperature control unit. Various models and capacities available depending upon individual requirements

Stability & Flow

Each Marshall specimen is tested in turn begining with the higher binder contents. Stability and flow are are assessed with a rate of strain of 50mm/minute and the reading should be obtained within 40 seconds of the sample being removed from from the water bath.

Our range of equipment has been designed to enable the user to complete the required assessments quickly and easily whilst achieving consistently accurate results.

Marshall Load Frame


40-11101 Marshall Load Frame complete with digital read out.

We offer a range of Marshall Load Frames and feature a high specification frame with a 50kN load capacity as our top of the line machine. The datalogger records up to 5 measurements per second for high accuracy testing and with it's fully variable speed limit this machine can be used for other standard tests such as Triaxial and CBR. This a truly versatile and value for money machine.


Also shown is semi-manual machine. Other specifications and models are available. Please contact us for more details.

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40-11106 Breaking Head stability mould. Complete with gauge disk and conforming to BS598 and ASTM D1559.

Results Evaluation & Reporting

The data obtained from the above tests and others such as Aggregate density, softening point and penetration of bitumens are used in the assessment of the optimun binder content for an asphalt mix. The results are usualy presented in a graphical form plotting stability against the percentage binder by mass.

Binder Analysis

Bituminous mixture analysis is an important factor, without which econmical use of raw materials, control of production and compliance with mix specification is almost impossible. There are a number of tests available under the umbrella of Binder Analysis and Materials Testing Equipment Ltd offer a range of equipment to facilitate the successfull analysis of bituminous mixtures.

Pressure Filter, Filter Paper, Compressor, Diatomaceous Earth (Filter Aid)

40-35107 Pressure Filter 4 ltr capacity. Fitted with a filter support mesh and pressure gauge, this apparatus has a working pressure of 80psi and is tested to 120psi. The base incorporates holes for securing the unit to a work bench if desired.

40-06010 Filter Paper 267mm diameter No1 with central hole 31.5mm diameter.
A wide range of other filter papers in various sizes and forms is available. For further details, please contact us.

40-35195 Compressor for use with pressure filter. Supplied complete with air hose and push fit schraeder valve coupling for easy connection to the pressure filter.

45-29730 Speedflow. Diatomaceous earth filter aid. For use with pressure filter. Supplied in 23kg bags.

Bottle Roller

40-10020 Bottle Rolling Machine A heavy duty bench mounted bottle rolling machine capable of accepting up to three bottles. With adjustable outer rollers.

40-10021 Steel Bottle 600 ml

40-10022 Steel Bottle 2500 ml

40-10023 Steel Bottle 3000 ml

40-10024 Steel Bottle 4000 ml

40-10025 Steel Bottle 7000 ml

40-10026 Steel Bottle 6000 ml

40-10028 Steel Bottle 12000 ml

40-10030 Funnel For steel bottle.

Binder Recovery

The recovery of bituminous binder is often required especially when the binder content of a mixture needs to be determined and subsequent testing for properties such as penetration and softening point is required. The most common methods of recovery involve creating a solution of binder in dichloromethane with the solvent later being removed by controlled evaporation leaving the bitumen in tact.

Binder Recovery Apparatus

40-10015 Binder Recovery Apparatus The apparatus comprises of a thermostatically controlled stainless steel heated water bath (with integral shelf), vacuum pump with regulator, gauge and manifold all mounted a sturdy base with anti-vibration rubberised feet. This double sample unit is supplied complete with rubber hose, bungs, two flasks and a set of polyproylene spheres to aid insulation and reduce the risk to the operator from splashes of hot water. Individual ball valves allow the use of a single sample flask if required.

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Centrifuge Extractor ASTM and AASHTO specify different methods of recovering bitumen from mixtures. The bitumen is extracted from a solution of specific solvents (Trichloroethane and Dichloromethane) and the percentage content calculated by difference.

Materials Testing Equipment Ltd offer a range of centrifuge extractors with capacities from 1.5kg to over 2.5kg.

For more details please contact us.


80-24310 Centrifuge Body Only

80-23820 Steel Bucket

80-35065 Rack for centrifuge tubes

80-24320 Angular Rotor, 6 place head

80-24028 Centrifuge tube, 50ml capacity

Solvent Recovery

Solvents are an ongoing cost in an asphalt testing laboratory so the facility to recover clean solvent from a dirty solution is a financial gain. Non flammable solvent such as dichloromethane and tricloroethylene can easily be recovered with the help of a solvent recovery still. Materials Testing Equipment have a range stills based on exactly the same distillation method but offering variations in capacity to suit the space available.

Solvent Recovery Still

40-13203 Still for solvent recovery. Bench mounted.

40-13210 Still for solvent recovery. Free Standing 27 Ltr capacity Stainless Steel tanks. Semi automatic.

40-13227 Still for solvent recovery. Free Standing 180 Ltr capacity Stainless Steel tanks. Semi automatic with integral step for easy access.

Daily Use Equipment

A selection of equipment used in the daily routine of an asphalt laboratory.

Asphalt Thermometers & Probes

55-17030 Digital Asphalt Thermometer, range from -50 to 13000C. The thermometer has a resolution of 0.10C up to 2000C and thereafter will give a reading in increments of 10C.

55-12010 Chisel Probe 100mm Long.

55-12013 Surface Temperature Probe, for heavy duty applications.

55-12020 Surface Temperature Probe.

55-12030 Thermometer Probe, general purpose type, 300mm long.

55-12055 Thermometer Probe, heavy duty type 500mm long.

Vapour Determination

40-14100 Draeger Meter, for methylene chloride determination. The sampling device will draw set quantities of sample through the relevant tubes at a prescribed flow rate

40-14120 Spare Pack Of 10 Tubes, for methylene chloride determination (Short term type 100A).

Burette & Stand

80-19328 Burette 50ml, class A, Double Bulb, white graduations. Measuring less than 450mm long, this short form burette offers height advantages when used within an enclosed space.

80-19300 Burette Base Retort, 250mm x 160mm.

80-19335 Burette Rod, 500mm x 10mm diameter.

80-19380 Bosshead.

80-19390 Clamp, four prong.

Rate Of Spread

40-18030 Rate Of Spread Balance. As described in BS598, the calibrated spring balance, when used in conjunction with the rate of spread of tray, will determine the rate of spread of coated chippings in terms of kg/m3; and will accept rates of spread of between 4 and 16kg/m3.

40-10833 Rate Of Spread Tray, manufactured from aluminium, 300mm square complete with chains and lifting eye

Texture Depth

40-46000 Teture Depth (Sand Patch) Apparatus. BS598: Part 105

Comprising Of::

  • 1 Rubber Disc Spreader
  • 1 set of Dividers (200mm)
  • 1 Kneeling Pad
  • 1 Windshield
  • 1 300mm Metal Rule
  • 2 Pyknometers with sand
  • 1 25ml Polypropylene Measuring Cylinder
  • 1 50ml Measuring Cylinder
  • 1 Polypropylene Carrying Container

Ring & Ball Apparatus

40-10220 Ring And Ball Apparatus, manufactured in accordance with BS2000: Part 58 and comprises of a stainless steel frame, two tapered rings, two dual ball guides, two steel balls and a glass 1000ml beaker

40-13520 Magnetic Stirrer

40-13523 Immersion Heater

Percentage Refusal Density (PRD)

40-09025 PRD Split Mould & Baseplate

40-09032 PVC Disc, 150mm diameter

40-09114 Tamping Foot, 146mm diameter

40-09116 Shank 300mm long, for use with tamping foot

45-29055 Silicone Grease Aerosol, 400ml

40-09117 Tamping Foot 102mm diameter

40-06005 Paper Disc, 150mm diameter

45-40052 Paraffin wax, pellets (1kg)

Binder Drainage

40-61000 Binder Drainage Basket, as described in the Specification for Highway Works, the test determines the target binder content for a porous asphalt, to prevent excessive binder drainage occurring during manufacture, transportation and laying.

40-61010 Binder Drainage Tray, 150mm x 150mm 10mm

40-61020 Binder Drainage Container, 150mm x 150mm x 150mm


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