Transport and Road Research Laboratory

The Transport and Road Research Laboratory is set in a facility of about 800 m2 with some of the most advanced equipment for the mechanical characterization of innovative and sustainable road and airport materials.

The main fields of interest are:


Rheology of Binders

The Laboratory of Rheology of Binders performs test for the physical-mechanical characterization of bituminous and synthetic binders, bio-binders, and mastics.

Activities include the classification (according to both traditional and performance-based systems), rheological characterization (stiffness, fatigue, permanent deformation, thermal cracking), and the evaluation of durability (aging, adhesion, water susceptibility, healing) of binders.

Dynamic Testing for Mixtures

The Laboratory of Dynamic Testing for Mixtures uses the most updated dynamic testing equipment and prototypes for the mechanical characterization of traditional materials as well as hot and cold recycled mixtures, warm mix asphalt, considering both bituminous or non-bituminous binders.

Activities aim at determining the main properties of road and airport mixtures (strength, stiffness, fatigue and rutting behaviour, interlayer shear strength and water sensitivity) and studying the behaviour of reinforcement and waterproofing systems for road infrastructure.

Geotechnics for Infrastructures

The Laboratory of Geotechnics for Infrastructures performs tests for the physical-mechanical characterization of soils and mineral, manufactured and recycled aggregates.

Activities include the classification of soils, the physical-mechanical characterization of mineral, manufactured and recycled aggregates and the investigation on lime or cement-stabilised soils. Aggregates are characterized in terms of size, shape, fines quality, bulk density, fragmentation, wearing, polishing, and freeze/thaw cycles resistances.

MOST (National Center for Sustainable Mobility)

The MOST Laboratory focuses to the development of sustainable mobility, considering the safety of road pavements. Specific simulating machines allow the tire-pavement interaction to be determined.

Activities aim at evaluating the main pavement properties that affect user safety, including skid resistance/friction, polishing and ravelling characteristics of dense and open graded wearing courses.


Rheology of Binders
  • Dynamic Shear Rheometer DSR;
  • Bending Beam Rheometer BBR;
  • Rolling Thin Film Oven Test RTFOT e Pressure Aging Vessel PAV;
  • Rotational Viscometer;
  • Binder Bond Strength BBS testing equipment (Pneumatic Adhesion Tensile Testing Instrument PATTI);
  • Penetration, Ring and Ball, Fraass breaking point testing equipment;
  • Mixer.
Dynamic Testing of Mixtures
  • 3 universal hydraulic machines with maximum load of 100 kN, 30 kN, 10 kN;
  • 2 pneumatic machines with maximum load of 10 kN and 14 kN;
  • Static machines using different configuration for 3-point and 4-point bending test, indirect tensile test, Leutner shear test and Marshall test;
  • Wheel Tracker;
  • Ancona Shear Testing Research and Analysis ASTRA equipment (static and dynamic loading);
  • Equipment for pull-off tests on composite systems;
  • Equipment for testing waterproofing systems;
  • Automatic binder extraction system;
  • Los Angeles drum for Cantabro tests on open-graded mixtures;
  • Mixing equipment;
  • 2 shear gyratory compactors;
  • 2 slab compactors;
  • Marshall impact compactor;
  • Coring and cutting equipment: 3 core diameters (38 mm, 75 mm, 100 mm), circular saw;
  • Drying and conditioning equipment: 7 ovens, 3 climatic chambers, 1 thermostatic bath.
Transportation Geotechnics
  • Equipment for Atterberg limits;
  • Proctor compactor;
  • CBR (California Bearing Ratio) machine;
  • Equipment for gradation analysis;
  • Equipment for the evaluation of Rigden voids;
  • Equipment for the determination of shape and flattening coefficients;
  • Equipment for Sand Equivalent and Methylene Blue tests;
  • Pycnometers;
  • Los Angeles drum;
  • Micro-Deval equipment;
  • Equipment for the determination of the Polished Stone Value (PSV);
  • Climatic chamber for freeze/thaw cycles.
MOST (National Center for Sustainable Mobility)
  • Wehner-Schulze equipment for measuring the friction of asphalt samples or aggregate mosaics at different levels of polishing;
  • Scuffing device for evaluating the ravelling of wearing course mixtures;
  • Sandblasting equipment.


Prof. Francesco Canestrari (scientific director)

Prof. Andrea Graziani (head of the laboratory)

Ph.D Andrea Grilli (laboratory manager)

Geom. Pierluigi Priori (technician)