ISSN 0862-5468 (Print), ISSN 1804-5847 (online) 

Ceramics-Silikáty 55, (1) 68 - 78 (2011)

Allahverdi Ali 1, Kani Ebrahim Najafi 2, Yazdanipour Mahshad 1
1 Cement Research Center, School of Chemical Engineering, Iran University of Science and Technology, Narmak 1684613114, Tehran, Iran
2 School of Chemical, Petroleum, and Gas Engineering, Semnan University, Semnan, 35195-363, Iran

Keywords: Geopolymer cement, Natural Pozzolan, Granulated blast furnace Slag, Mechanical Properties, Microstructure

A number of geopolymer cement mixes were designed and produced by alkali-activation of a pumice-type natural pozzolan. Effects of blast-furnace slag on basic engineering properties of the mixes were studied. Different engineering properties of the mixes such as setting times and 28-day compressive strength were studied at different amounts of blast-furnace slag, sodium oxide content, and water-to-cement ratio. The mix comprising of 5 wt.% blast-furnace slag and 8 wt.% Na₂O with a water-to-dry binder ratio of 0.30 exhibits the highest 28-day compressive strength, i.e. 36 MPa. Mixes containing 5 wt.% of ground granulated blast furnace slag showed the least efflorescence or best soundness. Laboratory techniques of X-ray diffractometry (XRD), fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), and scanning electron microscopy (SEM) were utilized for characterizing a number of mixes and studying their molecular and micro-structure. Investigations done by scanning electron microscopy confirm that smaller blast-furnace slag particles react totally while the larger ones react partially with alkaline activators and contribute to the formation of a composite microstructure.

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