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Asphalt pavers are a necessary tool for the State Department of Transportation and various construction companies across the United States. The equipment lays asphalt over roadways, highways, bridges, airports, and parking lots. It works to lay the asphalt flat with some compression before being compacted by a roller.
Asphalt pavers have been around since the late 1920s and was once an all in one type of machine. Unfortunately, the design was not efficient and other inventors stepped in to perfect the paver. By 1938, pavers as we now know them were patented and have changed only a bit to make the machines more efficient and long-lasting as our needs for more asphalt has grown.
Each paver features a hopper that asphalt, or other materials, are loaded into. A conveyor is attached to the hopper and takes the material to the auger which in turn places the materials in front of the screed. The screed then works to lay the asphalt while smoothing it out and adding the initial compression.
Pavers most often place asphalt but for major highways, they will use concrete as well. Asphalt absorbs noise well and supports standard vehicles. However, they cannot take the heavy weight of large trucks, and concrete becomes a necessity. Therefore, you will often find the right lane is concrete and asphalt in left and middle lanes.
Asphalt pavers are also used at airport runways and the material used vary. Smaller airports will often use strictly asphalt or a combination of asphalt and concrete. Major airports will have asphalt pavers work on their parking lots and parking decks, but their runways are made of concrete to handle the amount of airplanes landing.