Reducing operating costs for asphalt hot boxes




Ceredigion County Council


July 2016


The challenge

This maintenance Depot run by Ceredigion County Council to supply their road maintenance team used a hotbox to store bulk loads of asphalt at working temperature until it was required on site. Conventional hotbox material was not lasting much longer than 24 hours which was resulting in a lot of wasted material. Reducing this wasted material and also the high energy cost of running the hotbox would allow budget to be used on other maintenance activities. It would also help to improve the sustainability of highway maintenance operations in line with the authority’s sustainability objectives.

Our solution

After discussions with the client they decided to trial ULTILIFE HOTBOX, which uses Tarmac binder technology to enable significantly longer storage, reduced waste and improved workability compared to typical hot mix equivalents. ULTILIFE HOTBOX asphalts are supplied and stored at lower temperatures, which helps to reduce binder hardening and ensure that they remain workable for significantly longer than conventional hotbox asphalts. They also require lower energy input than conventional hotbox materials which reduces operating costs and associated carbon emissions for a more sustainable outcome.

Results and benefits

As part of Tarmac’s customer service, a member of the Tarmac’s technical support team visited the depot to calibrate the hotbox and set it to the appropriate storage temperature. After using ULTILIFE HOTBOX on a trial basis, the client was impressed by the lasting workability and could clearly see the benefits over conventional hot mix material. As well as offering maintenance teams continuous access to asphalt for 48 hours, there were cost savings from reductions in wasted material, lower running costs and elimination of part-load charges on smaller orders.

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Additional info

Cost reduction

Reduction in wasted asphalt, running costs and part load charges.

Improved productivity

Continuous access to materials and enhanced productivity.

Workability and finish

ULTILIFE HOTBOX remains workable for longer, improving compaction and finish.

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ULTILIFE HOTBOX case studies