Original paper

Susceptibility of mineral phases of steel slags towards carbonation: mineralogical, morphological and chemical assessment

Bodor, Marius; Santos, Rafael M.; Kriskova, Lubica; Elsen, Jan; Vlad, Maria; Van Gerven, Tom

Abstract

Process limitations have thus far prevented mineral carbonation of alkaline wastes from been widely applied. These barriers are caused by inefficient processing, but also by mineralogical aspects inherent to the materials. Better understanding and predictability of the effects of mineral carbonation on alkaline materials could be obtained by studying the carbonation susceptibility of constituent minerals separately, allowing for detailed and accurate analysis of their reaction kinetics and maximal conversions and of the carbonate products formed. For this purpose, this paper presents the synthesis and carbonation of the seven most abundant alkaline minerals found in AOD, CC and BOF slags, namely: a?kermanite (Ca2MgSi2O7), bredigite (Ca7Mg(SiO4)4), cuspidine (Ca4Si2O7F2), ?? and ??C2S (Ca2SiO4), merwinite (Ca3Mg(SiO4)2), and srebrodolskite (Ca2Fe2O5). Two experimental approaches to mineral carbonation of increasing levels of process severity are utilized: (mild) incubator carbonation, and (accelerated) pressurized slurry carbonation. In addition, the slags and two free oxides (CaO and MgO) are equally carbonated and evaluated. Data regarding CO2 uptake, mineral conversion and formed carbonate and non-carbonate products in the samples were obtained through TGA, QXRD (Rietveld refinement) and SEM techniques. Reduction in material basicity and evolution of particle morphology were also assessed. The synthesized mineral purities (>70 wt% target mineral phase) were found sufficient for more accurate assessment of carbonation behaviour of the individual minerals. Bredigite was found to be the most reactive mineral under all processing conditions; C2S and wollastonite were more reactive under slurry carbonation, while srebrodolskite and calcium monoferrite were found to be more reactive under moist carbonation. Merwinite and diopside had the slowest carbonation conversions. Calcite and aragonite were the dominant carbonate products formed, whereby aragonite formation was promoted in Mg-containing materials. The morphology of aragonite crystals and the packing density of its product layer were found to vary depending on the parent mineral. Characteristic slag carbonation products, not observed as extensively from synthetic mineral samples, were magnesian calcite from slurry carbonation, and monohydrocalcite and vaterite from moist carbonation. Wollastonite was the main crystalline non-carbonate product, occurring predominantly from slag carbonation, while silica-rich amorphous matter formed in all samples proportionally to CO2 uptake. Free lime, when present, controlled material basicity above pH 12, while silicates were found to typically possess pH in the range of 11.3?11.9, and Ca-carbonates eventually controlled the pH of well carbonated samples to values under 10.

Keywords

carbonatesferritesmineral carbonationmineral synthesisrietveld refinementsilicatessteel slags