Latest developments in EME pavement designs (International / EU focused)

Jean Nicholas, Shell Specialties


EME are used for pavements which require a high stiffness modulus, high resistance to rutting, good fatigue resistance and good durability. This technical solution has been already used with great success in South Africa and more projects are currently being developed. But EME quality is also dependent on its key components. One of the key components is bitumen 10/20 being a contributor to achieve the desired high stiffness and fatigue resistance.

After having been through recent EME projects in South Africa, we will demonstrate the importance of using 10/20 bitumen which keeps the balance between good low temperature behavior, fatigue performance and high stiffness modulus.

To further build on the importance of controlling the quality of the binder, we will present the context and results of a study done in Europe where a specific polymer modified hard grade bitumen has been developed to answer to specific EME constraints when used at higher elevation.


After a first experience with ExxonMobil, Jean-Nicolas joined Shell in 2003. For 15 years, he specialized in base oils working in various refineries located in France, The Netherlands and Singapore. In 2018, he joined Shell Specialties (Bitumen and Sulphur) as Bitumen Senior Application Specialist for France and BENELUX. In this position, he is supporting Shell customers on bitumen and asphalt mix design. During these years, he also provided several trainings on bitumen manufacturing and bitumen special products. Jean-Nicolas is also a member of several normalization working group.