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Determining The Marshall Stability of Bituminous Mixture

This test is done to determine the Marshall stability of bituminous mixture as per ASTM D 1559. The principle of this test is that Marshall stability is the resistance to plastic flow of cylindrical specimens of a bituminous mixture loaded on the lateral surface. It is the load carrying capacity of the mix at 60oC and is measured in kg. The apparatus needed to determine Marshall stability of bituminous mixture is

i) Marshall stability apparatus
ii) Balance and water bath


The sample needed is
From Marshall stability graph, select proportions of coarse aggregates, fine aggregates and filler in such a way, so as to fulfill the required specification. The total weight of the mix should be 1200g.

Procedure to determine Marshall stability of bituminous mixture

i) Heat the weighed aggregates and the bitumen separately upto 170oC and 163oC respectively.

ii) Mix them thoroughly, transfer the mixed material to the compaction mould arranged on the compaction pedestal.

iii) Give 75 blows on the top side of the specimen mix with a standard hammer (45cm, 4.86kg). Reverse the specimen and give 75 blows again. Take the mould with the specimen and cool it for a few minutes.

iv) Remove the specimen from the mould by gentle pushing. Mark the specimen and cure it at room temperature, overnight.

v) A series of specimens are prepared by a similar method with varying quantities of bitumen content, with an increment of 0.5% (3 specimens) or 1 bitumen content.

vi) Before testing of the mould, keep the mould in the water bath having a temperature of 60oC for half an hour.

vii) Check the stability of the mould on the Marshall stability apparatus.


Plot % of bitumen content on the X-axis and stability in kg on the Y-axis to get maximum Marshall stability of the bitumen mix. A sample plot is given


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Kanwarjot Singh

Kanwarjot Singh is the founder of Civil Engineering Portal, a leading civil engineering website which has been awarded as the best online publication by CIDC. He did his BE civil from Thapar University, Patiala and has been working on this website with his team of Civil Engineers.

If you have a query, you can ask a question here.

31 comments on "Determining The Marshall Stability of Bituminous Mixture"

gitimu says:

thanks for good work.Increase tests for bittumen

T.lokesh says:

this is lokesh asst. eng. roads in QA/QC.this is very helpfull to all juniors as well as
seniors. pls give some other field variations on the mix, gradations and necessary corections
on the design mix required to suit the loading conditions etc,…..

R G pasarkar says:

Is there any IS specified for this test? Is any mannual?
How come the weight of mix to be 1200gm?

Paul Cooper says:

1200g usually compacts enough to give just the required core height for stability and flow testing.

Sunil says:

It is very nice and appropiate information ..

arunabh says:

hey this type of article help civil engineering student thanks a lot

abdulazeez says:

This is a very good way learning how to use stability test for young civil engineering students, Thanks.

abdulazeez says:

I am a student of federal university of technology minna niger state nigeria, am doing my final year project on palm kernel shells as partial replacement for fine aggregate in alsphat concrete, please i need ur asistance on this my project topic. Thanks.

Hemant Kushwah says:

Thanks for needful Information


I want to know that why this test is not being done for BM (Bitumen Macadam).Having Bitumen Content 3 %(present) .Kindly reply as earliest.


highway construction


i want know fresh concrete slump detail mean how do increace slupm


sir, please tell me the produre of mix of bitumen with aggregate by weight og aggregate or by weight of mix

Salman says:

If your bitumen persentage is 5.5 bye the weight of total mix , then it convert to bye the w.t of total aggregate is your total mix =100%-5.5=94.5 , 5.5/94.5 =5.82 % bye the w.t of total aggregate


Sir,I want to know what is stability and flow value in marshall stability test.

Akinmusire Yomi says:

Sir please i have saved dis page for long time but now i need an assistance on d RHEOLOGICAL PROPERTY OF BITUMEN

Ric Rich says:

could there be any other test for stability and flow?

Ankit ghatiya says:

I want to know the density analysis of Marshall method.

john says:

I want to know content of bituminous materials

afroz says:

i want to know about blending of aggregates.?how to blend the aggregates for Marshall mix design…im doing project on that..?

G.Ravinder says:

i want to know why giving 75 blows for marshall mould casting

deny says:

50 blows for medium traffic
75 blows for high traffic

nikhil ranjan pal says:

why giving 75 blows for marshal mould preparation

saurabh siddhartha says:

how to take the reading of the marshal stability test

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