Geopolymers are a new class of materials that can be synthesized using natural minerals, and waste materials. Among these substrates, the use of ﬂy ash is desirable as it involves the conversion of a copious waste material into a useful product. The aim of the research was geopolymers synthesis from coal ﬂy ash and biomass ash. Concentrated sodium hydroxide and sodium silicate solutions were used as activators in geopolymerisation reaction. The results show that both coal ﬂy ash and biomass ash can be utilized as source materials for the production of geopolymers. The surface morphology and chemical composition analysis were examined for the obtained geopolymers and ashes from coal and biomass combustion by SEM-EDS methods. It was found almost total disappearance of spherical forms of grains and reduction the porosity of structure for geopolymer based on ﬂy ash from coal combustion. While the structure of the geopolymer based ash from biomass combustion is more porous. The UV-VIS-NIR spectra were performed on the coal ﬂy ash, biomass ash and geopolymers. They showed that the obtained geopolymers possess optical and photocatalytic properties. The similarity of the geopolymer network and the zeolite framework in relation to ion exchange and accommodation of metal ions open questions on possibilities for the application of geopolymer materials as amorphous analogues of zeolite. The FT-IR spectra analyses were used on the geopolymers before and after metals sorption. It was found that geopolymer based on ash from biomass combustion has better sorption properties compared to geopolymer based on ash from coal combustion.
The article deals with the gas development of the geopolymer binder system hardened by heat and provides the comparison with organic binder systems. The GEOPOL® W technology is completely inorganic binder system, based on water. This fact allow that the gas generated during pouring is based on water vapour only. No dangerous emissions, fumes or unpleasant odours are developed. The calculated amount of water vapour generated from GEOPOL® W sand mixture is 1.9 cm3/g. The measured volume of gas for GEOPOL® W is 4.3 cm3/g. The measurement of gas evolution proves that the inorganic binder system GEOPOL® W generates very low volume of gas (water vapour) in comparison with PUR cold box amine and Croning. The amount of gas is several times lower than PUR cold box amine (3.7x) and Croning (4.2x). The experiment results are consistent with the literature sources. The difference between the calculated and the measured gas volume is justified by the reverse moisture absorption from the air after dehydration during storing and preparing the sand samples. Minimal generated volumes of gas/water vapour brings, mainly as was stated no dangerous emissions, also the following advantages: minimal risk of bubble defects creation, the good castings without defects, reduced costs for exhaust air treatment, no condensates on dies, reduced costs for cleaning.
The results of investigations of moulding sands with an inorganic binder called GEOPOL, developed by the SAND TEAM Company are presented in the paper. Hardeners of various hardening rates are used for moulding sands with this binder. The main aim of investigations was determination of the influence of the hardening rate of moulding sands with the GEOPOL binder on technological properties of these sands (bending strength, tensile strength, permeability and grindability). In addition, the final strength of moulding sands of the selected compositions was determined by two methods: by splitting strength and shear strength measurements. No essential influence of the hardening rate on such parameters as: permeability, grindability and final strength was found. However, the sand in which the slowest hardener (SA 72) were used, after 1 hour of holding, had the tensile and bending strength practically zero. Thus, the time needed for taking to pieces the mould made of such moulding sand will be 1.5 - 2 hours.
The paper presents the results of an investigation of the thermal deformation of moulding sands with an inorganic (geopolymer) binder with a relaxation additive, whose main task is to reduce the final (residual) strength and improves knocking-out properties of moulding sand. The moulding sand without a relaxation additive was the reference point. The research was carried out using the hot-distortion method (DMA apparatus from Multiserw-Morek). The results were combined with linear deformation studies with determination of the linear expansion factor (Netzsch DIL 402C dilatometer). The study showed that the introduction of relaxation additive has a positive effect on the thermal stability of moulding sand by limiting the measured deformation value, in relation to the moulding sand without additive. In addition, a relaxation additive slightly changes the course of the dilatometric curve. Change in the linear dimension of the moulding sand sample with the relaxation additive differs by only 0.05%, in comparison to the moulding sand without additive.
Recently, the use of inorganic binders cured by heat as a progressive technology for large scale production of cores is widely discussed topic in aluminium foundries. As practical experiences show, knock-out properties of inorganic binders were significantly increased, although they cannot overcome organic based binder systems. This paper contains information about hot curing processes based on alkali silicate and geopolymer binder systems for core making. Main differences between hot cured geopolymers and hot cured alkali silicate based inorganic binders are discussed. Theory of geopolymer binder states, that binder bridge destruction is mainly of adhesive character. The main aim of this research paper was to examine binder bridge destruction of alkali silicate and geopolymer binder systems. In order to fulfil this objective, sample parts were submitted to defined thermal load, broken and by using SEM analysis, binder bridge destruction mechanism was observed. Results showed that geopolymer binder system examined within this investigation does not have mainly adhesive destruction of binder bridges, however the ratio of adhesive-cohesive to cohesive destruction is higher than by use of alkali silicate based binder systems, therefore better knock-out properties can be expected.
The investigation results of the influence of the reclaim additions on the properties of moulding sands with the GEOPOL geopolymer binder developed by the SAND TEAM Company were presented. Two brands of hardeners were applied in the tested compositions, the first one was developed by the SAND TEAM Company, marked SA72 and the new hardener offered by the KRATOS Company, marked KR72. The main purpose of investigations was to determine the influence of reclaim fractions and the applied hardener on the basic moulding sands properties, such as: bending and tensile strength, permeability and grindability. The unfavourable influence of the reclaim additions into moulding sands on the tested properties as well as an increased hardening rate, were found. Moulding sands, in which the hardener KR72 of the KRATOS Company was used, were less sensitive to the reclaim additions.
The use of environmentally friendly inorganic binders and new technologies for cores production is widely discussed topic in recent years. This paper contains information about new hot curing process for core making with alumina-silicate based inorganic binders – geopolymers. Main differences between hot cured geopolymers and hot cured alkali silicate based inorganic binders are discussed. The main objective of this research paper was to investigate basic technological properties of geopolymer binder system such as strength, compaction, storage ability and knock-out properties. For this purpose, three mixtures with different powder additives were prepared and tested in laboratory conditions using specific methods. Strength properties evaluation showed sufficient levels as well as knock-out properties measurement, even with additives B and C originally designed for the use with alkali silicate based two component binder systems. Additives B and C were considered compatible with geopolymer binders after casting production trial results. Storage ability of geopolymers seems to be more sensitive than of alkali silicate based binders in the same tested conditions. Mixtures with geopolymer binder showed 20% more decrease of strength compared to alkali silicate binders after 24 hours in conditions of 25 °C and 65 %RH.
This paper deals with the complete technology of inorganic geopolymer binder system GEOPOL® which is a result of long term research and development. The objective of this paper is to provide a theoretical and practical overview of the GEOPOL® binder system and introduce possible ways of moulds and cores production in foundries. GEOPOL® is a unique inorganic binder system, which is needed and welcomed in terms of the environment, the work environment, and the sustainable resources. The GEOPOL® technology is currently used in the foundries for three basic production processes/technologies: (1) for self-hardening moulding mixtures, (2) sand mixtures hardened by gaseous carbon dioxide and (3) the hot box technology with hot air hardening. The GEOPOL® technology not only solves the binder system and the ways of hardening, but also deals with the entire foundry production process. Low emissions produced during mixing of sand, moulding, handling, and pouring bring a relatively significant improvement of work conditions in foundries (no VOCs). A high percentage of the reclaim sand can be used again for the preparation of the moulding mixture.