Matching Items (8)

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Alkali activated systems: understanding the influence of curing conditions and activator type/chemistry on the mechanical strength and chemical structure of fly ash/slag systems

Description

The alkali activation of aluminosilicate materials as binder systems derived from industrial byproducts have been extensively studied due to the advantages they offer in terms enhanced material properties, while increasing

The alkali activation of aluminosilicate materials as binder systems derived from industrial byproducts have been extensively studied due to the advantages they offer in terms enhanced material properties, while increasing sustainability by the reuse of industrial waste and byproducts and reducing the adverse impacts of OPC production. Fly ash and ground granulated blast furnace slag are commonly used for their content of soluble silica and aluminate species that can undergo dissolution, polymerization with the alkali, condensation on particle surfaces and solidification. The following topics are the focus of this thesis: (i) the use of microwave assisted thermal processing, in addition to heat-curing as a means of alkali activation and (ii) the relative effects of alkali cations (K or Na) in the activator (powder activators) on the mechanical properties and chemical structure of these systems. Unsuitable curing conditions instigate carbonation, which in turn lowers the pH of the system causing significant reductions in the rate of fly ash activation and mechanical strength development. This study explores the effects of sealing the samples during the curing process, which effectively traps the free water in the system, and allows for increased aluminosilicate activation. The use of microwave-curing in lieu of thermal-curing is also studied in order to reduce energy consumption and for its ability to provide fast volumetric heating. Potassium-based powder activators dry blended into the slag binder system is shown to be effective in obtaining very high compressive strengths under moist curing conditions (greater than 70 MPa), whereas sodium-based powder activation is much weaker (around 25 MPa). Compressive strength decreases when fly ash is introduced into the system. Isothermal calorimetry is used to evaluate the early hydration process, and to understand the reaction kinetics of the alkali powder activated systems. A qualitative evidence of the alkali-hydroxide concentration of the paste pore solution through the use of electrical conductivity measurements is also presented, with the results indicating the ion concentration of alkali is more prevalent in the pore solution of potassium-based systems. The use of advanced spectroscopic and thermal analysis techniques to distinguish the influence of studied parameters is also discussed.

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Date Created
  • 2013

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Novel materials and processing routes using alkali-activated systems

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This dissertation aims at developing novel materials and processing routes using alkali activated aluminosilicate binders for porous (lightweight) geopolymer matrices and 3D-printing concrete applications. The major research objectives are executed

This dissertation aims at developing novel materials and processing routes using alkali activated aluminosilicate binders for porous (lightweight) geopolymer matrices and 3D-printing concrete applications. The major research objectives are executed in different stages. Stage 1 includes developing synthesis routes, microstructural characterization, and performance characterization of a family of economical, multifunctional porous ceramics developed through geopolymerization of an abundant volcanic tuff (aluminosilicate mineral) as the primary source material. Metakaolin, silica fume, alumina powder, and pure silicon powder are also used as additional ingredients when necessary and activated by potassium-based alkaline agents. In Stage 2, a processing route was developed to synthesize lightweight geopolymer matrices from fly ash through carbonate-based activation. Sodium carbonate (Na2CO3) was used in this study to produce controlled pores through the release of CO2 during the low-temperature decomposition of Na2CO3. Stage 3 focuses on 3D printing of binders using geopolymeric binders along with several OPC-based 3D printable binders. In Stage 4, synthesis and characterization of 3D-printable foamed fly ash-based geopolymer matrices for thermal insulation is the focus. A surfactant-based foaming process, multi-step mixing that ensures foam jamming transition and thus a dry foam, and microstructural packing to ensure adequate skeletal density are implemented to develop foamed suspensions amenable to 3D-printing. The last stage of this research develops 3D-printable alkali-activated ground granulated blast furnace slag mixture. Slag is used as the source of aluminosilicate and shows excellent mechanical properties when activated by highly alkaline activator (NaOH + sodium silicate solution). However, alkali activated slag sets and hardens rapidly which is undesirable for 3D printing. Thus, a novel mixing procedure is developed to significantly extend the setting time of slag activated with an alkaline activator to suit 3D printing applications without the use of any retarding admixtures. This dissertation, thus advances the field of sustainable and 3D-printable matrices and opens up a new avenue for faster and economical construction using specialized materials.

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Date Created
  • 2019

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FTIR analysis of alkali activated slag and fly ash using deconvolution techniques

Description

The studies on aluminosilicate materials to replace traditional construction materials such as ordinary Portland cement(OPC) to reduce the effects caused has been an important research area for the past decades.

The studies on aluminosilicate materials to replace traditional construction materials such as ordinary Portland cement(OPC) to reduce the effects caused has been an important research area for the past decades. Many properties like strength have already been studied and the primary focus is to learn about the reaction mechanism and the effect of the parameters on the formed products. The aim of this research was to explore the structural changes and reaction product analysis of geopolymers (Slag & Fly Ash) using Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) and deconvolution

techniques. Spectroscopic techniques give valuable information at a molecular level but not all methods are economic and simple. To understand the mechanisms of alkali activated aluminosilicate materials, attenuated total reflectance (ATR) FTIR has been used where the effect of the parameters on the reaction products have been analyzed. To analyze complex systems like geopolymers using FTIR, deconvolution techniques help to obtain the properties of a particular peak attributed to a certain molecular vibration.

Time and temperature dependent analysis were done on slag pastes to understand the polymerization of reactive silica in the system with time and temperature variance. For time dependent analysis slag has been activated with sodium and potassium silicates using two different `n'values and three different silica modulus [Ms- (SiO2 /M2O)] values. The temperature dependent analysis was done by curing the samples at 60C and 80C. Similarly fly ash has been studied by activating with alkali hydroxides and alkali silicates. Under the same curing conditions the fly ash samples were evaluated to analyze the effects of added silicates for alkali activation.

The peak shifts in the FTIR explains the changes in the structural nature of the matrix and can be identified using the deconvolution technique. A strong correlation is found between the concentrations of silicate monomer in the activating position of the main Si-O-T (where T is Al/Si) stretching band in the FTIR spectrum, which

gives an indication of the relative changes in the Si/Al ratio. Also, the effect of the cation and silicate concentration in the activating solution has been discussed using the Fourier self deconvolution technique.

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Date Created
  • 2014

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Multiscale engineering response of alkali activated aluminosilicate binders

Description

Sustainable materials and methods have achieved a pivotal role in the research plethora of the new age due to global warming. Cement production is responsible in contributing to 5% of

Sustainable materials and methods have achieved a pivotal role in the research plethora of the new age due to global warming. Cement production is responsible in contributing to 5% of global CO2 emissions. Complete replacement of cement by alkaline activation of aluminosilicate waste materials such as slag and fly ash is a major advancement towards reducing the adverse impacts of cement production. Comprehensive research has been done, to understand the optimized composition and hydration products. The focus of this dissertation is to understand the multiscale behavior ranging from early age properties, fundamental material structure, fracture and crack resistance properties, durability responses and alternative activation methods to existing process.

The utilization of these materials has relied primarily on the dual benefits of reduced presence in landfills and cost. These have also proven to yield a higher service life as opposed to conventional ordinary portland cement (OPC) concrete due to an enhanced microstructure. The use of such materials however has not been readily acceptable due to detrimental early age behavior. The influence of design factors is studied to understand the reaction mechanism. Silicon polymerization at the molecular level is studied to understand the aluminosilicate interactions which are responsible for prevention of any leaching of ions. A comparative study between fly ash and slag binders is carried out to evaluate the stable states of sodium, aluminum and silicon in both these binders, since the likelihood of the sodium ions leaching out is high.

Compressive and flexural strength have been reported in previous literature, but the impact of crack resistance was unevaluated from an approach of characterizing the fracture process zone. Alternative routes of activation are explored with an intent to reduce the high alkalinity by use of neutral salts such as sodium sulfate. High volume OPC replacement by both class C and F fly ash is performed to evaluate the differences in hydration phase formation responsible for its pore refinement and strength. Spectroscopic studies have also allowed to study the fundamental material structure. Durability studies are also performed on these samples to understand the probability external sulfate attacks as opposed to OPC mixes.

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Date Created
  • 2016

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Kinetics of alkaline activation of slag and fly ash-slag systems

Description

Alkali-activated aluminosilicates, commonly known as "geopolymers", are being increasingly studied as a potential replacement for Portland cement. These binders use an alkaline activator, typically alkali silicates, alkali hydroxides or a

Alkali-activated aluminosilicates, commonly known as "geopolymers", are being increasingly studied as a potential replacement for Portland cement. These binders use an alkaline activator, typically alkali silicates, alkali hydroxides or a combination of both along with a silica-and-alumina rich material, such as fly ash or slag, to form a final product with properties comparable to or better than those of ordinary Portland cement. The kinetics of alkali activation is highly dependent on the chemical composition of the binder material and the activator concentration. The influence of binder composition (slag, fly ash or both), different levels of alkalinity, expressed using the ratios of Na2O-to-binders (n) and activator SiO2-to-Na2O ratios (Ms), on the early age behavior in sodium silicate solution (waterglass) activated fly ash-slag blended systems is discussed in this thesis. Optimal binder composition and the n values are selected based on the setting times. Higher activator alkalinity (n value) is required when the amount of slag in the fly ash-slag blended mixtures is reduced. Isothermal calorimetry is performed to evaluate the early age hydration process and to understand the reaction kinetics of the alkali activated systems. The differences in the calorimetric signatures between waterglass activated slag and fly ash-slag blends facilitate an understanding of the impact of the binder composition on the reaction rates. Kinetic modeling is used to quantify the differences in reaction kinetics using the Exponential as well as the Knudsen method. The influence of temperature on the reaction kinetics of activated slag and fly ash-slag blends based on the hydration parameters are discussed. Very high compressive strengths can be obtained both at early ages as well as later ages (more than 70 MPa) with waterglass activated slag mortars. Compressive strength decreases with the increase in the fly ash content. A qualitative evidence of leaching is presented through the electrical conductivity changes in the saturating solution. The impact of leaching and the strength loss is found to be generally higher for the mixtures made using a higher activator Ms and a higher n value. Attenuated Total Reflectance-Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (ATR-FTIR) is used to obtain information about the reaction products.

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Date Created
  • 2012

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New nanostructured aluminosilicates from geopolymer chemistry

Description

Geopolymers, a class of X-ray amorphous, ceramic-like aluminosilicate materials are produced at ambient temperatures through a process called geopolymerization. Due to both low energy requirement during synthesis and interesting

Geopolymers, a class of X-ray amorphous, ceramic-like aluminosilicate materials are produced at ambient temperatures through a process called geopolymerization. Due to both low energy requirement during synthesis and interesting mechanical and chemical properties, geopolymers are grabbing enormous attention. Although geopolymers have a broad range of applications including thermal/acoustic insulation and waste immobilization, they are always prepared in monolithic form. The primary aim of this study is to produce new nanostructured materials from the geopolymerization process, including porous monoliths and powders.

In view of the current interest in porous geopolymers for non-traditional applications, it is becoming increasingly important to develop synthetic techniques to introduce interconnected pores into the geopolymers. This study presents a simple synthetic route to produce hierarchically porous geopolymers via a reactive emulsion templating process utilizing triglyceride oil. In this new method, highly alkaline geopolymer resin is mixed with canola oil to form a homogeneous viscous emulsion which, when cured at 60 °C, gives a hard monolithic material. During the process, the oil in the alkaline emulsion undergoes a saponification reaction to decompose into water-soluble soap and glycerol molecules which are extracted to yield porous geopolymers. Nitrogen sorption studies indicates the presence of mesopores, whereas the SEM studies reveals that the mesoporous geopolymer matrix is dotted with spherical macropores. The method exhibits flexibility in that the pore structure of the final porous geopolymers products can be adjusted by varying the precursor composition.

In a second method, the geopolymerization process is modified to produce highly dispersible geopolymer particles, by activating metakaolin with sodium silicate solutions containing excess alkali, and curing for short duration under moist conditions. The produced geopolymer particles exhibit morphology similar to carbon blacks and structured silicas, while also being stable over a wide pH range.

Finally, highly crystalline hierarchical faujasite zeolites are prepared by yet another modification of the geopolymerization process. In this technique, the second method is combined with a saponification reaction of triglyceride oil. The resulting hierarchical zeolites exhibit superior CO2-sorption properties compared to equivalent commercially available and currently reported materials. Additionally, the simplicity of all three of these techniques means they are readily scalable.

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Date Created
  • 2015

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Functionalized amorphous aluminosilicates

Description

Alkali treated aluminosilicate (geopolymer) was functionalized by surfactant to increase the hydrophobicity for making Pickering emulsion for the first part of this work. In the first part of this study,

Alkali treated aluminosilicate (geopolymer) was functionalized by surfactant to increase the hydrophobicity for making Pickering emulsion for the first part of this work. In the first part of this study, alkali treated metakaolin was functionalized with cetyltrimethylammonium bromide ((C16H33)N(CH3)3Br, CTAB). The electrostatic interaction between this quaternary ammonium and the surface of the aluminosilicate which has negative charge has taken place. The particles then were used to prepare Pickering emulsion. The resulting stable dispersions, obtained very fast at very simple conditions with low ratio of aluminosilicate to liquid phase. In the second part, the interaction between geopolymer and glycerol was studied to see the covalent grafting of the geopolymer for making geopolymer composite. The composite material would be the basis material to be used as support catalyst, thin coating reagent and flame retardant material and so on, Variety of techniques, Thermogravimetric (TGA), Particle-induced X-ray emission (PIXE), FTIR, Solid state NMR, Powder X-ray diffraction (PXRD), BET surface area, Elemental analysis (CHN), TEM, SEM and Optical microscopy were used to characterize the functionalized geopolymer.

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Date Created
  • 2012

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Understanding the influence of cation and activator type/chemistry on the reaction kinetics and mechanical strength of liquid and powder silicate activated slag

Description

The increased emphasis on the detrimental effects of the production of construction materials such as ordinary portland cement (OPC) have driven studies of the alkali activation of aluminosilicate materials as

The increased emphasis on the detrimental effects of the production of construction materials such as ordinary portland cement (OPC) have driven studies of the alkali activation of aluminosilicate materials as binder systems derived from industrial byproducts. They have been extensively studied due to the advantages they offer in terms of enhanced material properties, while increasing sustainability by the reuse of industrial waste and reducing the adverse impacts of OPC production. Ground granulated blast furnace slag is one of the commonly used materials for their content of calcium and silica species. Alkaline activators such as silicates, aluminates etc. are generally used. These materials undergo dissolution, polymerization with the alkali, condensation on particle surfaces and solidification under the influence of alkaline activators. Exhaustive studies exploring the effects of sodium silicate as an activator however there is a significant lack of work on exploring the effect of the cation and the effect of liquid and powder activators. The focus of this thesis is hence segmented into two topics: (i) influence of liquid Na and K silicate activators to explore the effect of silicate and hydroxide addition and (ii) influence of powder Na and K Silicate activators to explore the effect of cation, concentration and silicates. Isothermal calorimetric studies have been performed to evaluate the early hydration process, and to understand the reaction kinetics of the liquid and powder alkali activated systems. The reaction kinetics had an impact on the early age behavior of these binders which can be explained by the compressive strength results. It was noticed that the concentration and silica modulus of the activator had a greater influence than the cation over the compressive strength. Quantification of the hydration products resultant from these systems was performed via thermo gravimetric analysis (TGA). The difference in the reaction products formed with varying cation and silicate addition in these alkali activated systems is brought out. Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy was used to investigate the degree of polymerization achieved in these systems. This is indicative of silica and alumina bonds in the system. Differences in the behavior of the cation are attributable to size of the hydration sphere and polarizing effect of the cation which are summarized at the end of the study.

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Date Created
  • 2013