Vytautas “Vyt” P. Puzinauskas is widely known in the industry for his influence on the development of the viscosity grading system of asphalt. He designed the Asphalt Institute vacuum capillary viscometer and the Asphalt Institute—Puinauskas field viscometer used around the world. He initiated research that established significant differences between the chemical and physical properties of petroleum asphalt and coal-tar products. This research enabled the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) to classify petroleum asphalt separately from coal-tar products and the environmentally restrictive handling practices associated with them.
As Research Director for the Asphalt Institute, Mr. Puzinauskas was responsible for supervision of the Institute’s research activities, and for the development of tests and studies involving asphalts, soils, mineral aggregates, paving mixtures and a variety of industrial applications of asphalt. He made important contributions in the areas of soil stabilization, asphalt modification and key contributions involving asphalt usage in the environment.
Mr. Puzinauskas began his career with the Asphalt Institute in 1957 as Principal Engineer and served as its Director of Research from 1980 to 1989. He currently participates and contributes to several key national highway research organizations – the Transportation Research Board (TRB), the National Cooperative Highway Research Program (NCHRP), the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) and the Strategic Highway Research Program (SHRP).
He is chairman of TRB Committee A2D01 on Bituminous Materials and he is also chairman of ASTM Committee D4.40 on Asphalt Specifications. He is a member of ASTM Committees D-4, D-8. and D-l8. He served as chairman of ASTM Subcommittee on Asphalt Durability.
Mr. Puzinauskas is a member of the Association of Asphalt Paving Technologists (AAPT) and he served in 1984-85 as President of that association. In 1976, he received ASTM’s Award of Merit and Fellowship. In 1979 he received the “W. J. Emmons’s” Annual Award for Best Paper from AAPT. In 1987 he received the highly coveted ASTM Committee D-4’s “Prevost Hubbard” Award for outstanding contributions to paving technology. Mr. Puzinauskas also was selected by Engineering News Record as one of the men who made their mark in the construction industry.