ASTM D36 / D36M - 12

    Standard Test Method for Softening Point of Bitumen (Ring-and-Ball Apparatus)

    Active Standard ASTM D36 / D36M | Developed by Subcommittee: D08.03

    Book of Standards Volume: 04.04


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    ASTM D36 / D36M

    Significance and Use

    Bitumens are viscoelastic materials without sharply defined melting points; they gradually become softer and less viscous as the temperature rises. For this reason, softening points must be determined by an arbitrary and closely defined method if results are to be reproducible.

    The softening point is useful in the classification of bitumens, as one element in establishing the uniformity of shipments or sources of supply, and is indicative of the tendency of the material to flow at elevated temperatures encountered in service.

    1. Scope

    1.1 This test method covers the determination of the softening point of bitumen in the range from 30 to 157°C [86 to 315°F] using the ring-and-ball apparatus immersed in distilled water [30 to 80°C] or USP glycerin (above 80 to 157°C).

    1.2 The values stated in either SI units or inch-pound units are to be regarded separately as standard. The values stated in each system may not be exact equivalents; therefore, each system shall be used independently of the other. Combining values from the two systems may result in non-conformance with the standard.

    1.3 This standard does not purport to address all of the safety concerns, if any, associated with its use. It is the responsibility of the user of this standard to establish appropriate safety and health practices and determine the applicability of regulatory limitations prior to use.


    2. Referenced Documents (purchase separately) The documents listed below are referenced within the subject standard but are not provided as part of the standard.

    ASTM Standards

    C670 Practice for Preparing Precision and Bias Statements for Test Methods for Construction Materials

    D92 Test Method for Flash and Fire Points by Cleveland Open Cup Tester

    D140 Practice for Sampling Bituminous Materials

    D3461 Test Method for Softening Point of Asphalt and Pitch (Mettler Cup-and-Ball Method)

    E1 Specification for ASTM Liquid-in-Glass Thermometers


    ICS Code

    ICS Number Code 91.100.50 (Binders. Sealing materials)

    UNSPSC Code

    UNSPSC Code 30121504(Bitumen)


    DOI: 10.1520/D0036_D0036M-12

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