Synthesis of portland cement and calcium sulfoaluminate-belite cement for sustainable development and performance

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Date

2009-12

Authors

Chen, Irvin Allen

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Abstract

Portland cement concrete, the most widely used manufactured material in the world, is made primarily from water, mineral aggregates, and portland cement. The production of portland cement is energy intensive, accounting for 2% of primary energy consumption and 5% of industrial energy consumption globally. Moreover, Portland cement manufacturing contributes significantly to greenhouse gases and accounts for 5% of the global CO2 emissions resulting from human activity. The primary objective of this research was to explore methods of reducing the environmental impact of cement production while maintaining or improving current performance standards. Two approaches were taken, 1.) incorporation of waste materials in portland cement synthesis, and 2.) optimization of an alternative environmental friendly binder, calcium sulfoaluminate-belite cement. These approaches can lead to less energy consumption, less emission of CO2, and more reuse of industrial waste materials for cement manufacturing. In the portland cement part of the research, portland cement clinkers conforming to the compositional specifications in ASTM C 150 for Type I cement were successfully synthesized from reagent-grade chemicals with 0% to 40% fly ash and 0% to 60% slag incorporation (with 10% intervals), 72.5% limestone with 27.5% fly ash, and 65% limestone with 35% slag. The synthesized portland cements had similar early-age hydration behavior to commercial portland cement. However, waste materials significantly affected cement phase formation. The C3S–C2S ratio decreased with increasing amounts of waste materials incorporated. These differences could have implications on proportioning of raw materials for cement production when using waste materials. In the calcium sulfoaluminate-belite cement part of the research, three calcium sulfoaluminate-belite cement clinkers with a range of phase compositions were successfully synthesized from reagent-grade chemicals. The synthesized calcium sulfoaluminate-belite cement that contained medium C4A3 S and C2S contents showed good dimensional stability, sulfate resistance, and compressive strength development and was considered the optimum phase composition for calcium sulfoaluminate-belite cement in terms of comparable performance characteristics to portland cement. Furthermore, two calcium sulfoaluminate-belite cement clinkers were successfully synthesized from natural and waste materials such as limestone, bauxite, flue gas desulfurization sludge, Class C fly ash, and fluidized bed ash proportioned to the optimum calcium sulfoaluminate-belite cement synthesized from reagent-grade chemicals. Waste materials composed 30% and 41% of the raw ingredients. The two calcium sulfoaluminate-belite cements synthesized from natural and waste materials showed good dimensional stability, sulfate resistance, and compressive strength development, comparable to commercial portland cement.

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