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Asphalt is a versatile material, having a number of properties which fit it for varied and often diverse uses. It is both elastic and plastic according to the manner in which it is employed. It is highly resistant to both acids and alkalies; is a nonconductor of electricity; is waterproof; and consequently highly durable. It is but natural that such a material should have wide use in industry and when to the above-named qualities there is added the one of high cementing value it follows that asphalt should be one of the important materials employed in the transportation field. In 1939 approximately 6,200,000 tons of asphalt were used of which 4,500,000 tons or 73 per cent were employed in the construction of streets, highways, airports, etc.
Chief Engineer, The Asphalt Institute, New York, N. Y.