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Accelerated carbonation of wastes and minerals

Accelerated carbonation of wastes and minerals

Araizi, Paris-Kavalan (2015) Accelerated carbonation of wastes and minerals. PhD thesis, University of Greenwich.

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Accelerated carbonation technology (ACT) could be used for the stabilisation of hazardous wastes, remediation of contaminated soils and re-use/recycling of various waste streams. ACT has also potential for storing anthropogenic CO2 emissions into mineral silicates and alkaline waste residues via mineral or waste carbonation. Compared to ocean and geological storage, mineral and waste carbonation offer several advantages such as long-term storage and low monitoring requirements.

Currently, the biggest challenge of mineral carbonation is the low conversion rate of calcium and magnesium-based minerals into thermodynamically stable carbonates under ambient temperature and pressure. Also, literature offers little information about physical techniques or chemical substances that could enhance the efficacy of accelerated carbonation of alkaline wastes.

In this study, various carbonation techniques were applied for increasing the carbonation reactivity of magnesium hydroxide. The experiments were conducted under low temperature and pressure, while the maximum reaction time was 24 hours. Under these conditions the associated costs are kept to a minimum. The possibility of producing monolithic products with value-added was investigated by using blended mixtures of magnesium and calcium hydroxide. These mixtures were cured in carbon dioxide for 7 and 28 days and their physical properties were measured and compared with the properties for normal and lightweight concrete.

Moreover, several alkaline residues were carbonated with the aid of ultrasound and four candidate catalysts (acetic acid, ethanol, sodium hypochlorite and sodium nitrite) and their CO2 uptake was measured. During sonication the variables: ultrasonic frequency, water content and treatment time were examined, while the applied chemicals were added at three different molarities (0.1 M, 0.5M and 2.5M).

Throughout this work a number of analytical techniques were used for the characterisation of the raw and carbonated materials. These techniques included XRay fluorescence, X-ray diffraction, wet laser analysis, total organic carbon analysis and scanning electron microscopy.

The results showed that the CO2-reactivity of Mg(OH)2 was low due to thermodynamic constraints that inhibited the rapid diffusion of CO2 into the system.
The mixtures composed of pure Mg showed improved compressive strength and bulk density. In addition, sonication at low water content was weak, as there was lack of enough water to facilitate cavitation. On the other hand, at high water content the achieved CO2 uptake of the products increased by up to four times, as the wet conditions enhanced the cavitation of the solid particles. Finally, it was found that ethanol and acetic acid promoted the hydration rate of CO2 during accelerated carbonation, while minerals phase analysis did not reveal the formation of toxic by-products.

In conclusion, the findings of this study proved that sonication depends highly on water content and is favoured at wet conditions. Furthermore, acetic acid and ethanol are two chemicals with potential to ameliorate the accelerated carbonation of various industrial wastes without the formation of un-desired or toxic compounds.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Uncontrolled Keywords: Carbonation, waste carbon technology,
Subjects: T Technology > TD Environmental technology. Sanitary engineering
Faculty / School / Research Centre / Research Group: Faculty of Engineering & Science
Faculty of Engineering & Science > School of Science (SCI)
Last Modified: 20 Sep 2018 10:05

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