Influence of raw material type and of the overall chemical composition on phase formation and sintered microstructure of mullite aggregates


Dense mullite aggregates with varied (47-70%) alumina contents have been prepared by a conventional dry-powder pressing technique followed by heat treatments at temperatures in the range of 1450-1725 degrees C. Different types of clays, beach sand sillimanite (BSS) and a high purity aluminium hydroxide were used as starting materials. Mullites derived from BSS consisted of equi-axed grains whereas those obtained from clay containing precursor mixtures exhibited elongated grains. The bulk density (BD), apparent porosity (AP) and water absorption (WA) capacity of sintered mullites were found to be strongly influenced by the pre-mullitization step of the precursors and in a less extent by the type of raw material, its hydration degree and the impurity contents of Fe(2)O(3), CaO and Na(2)O. Mullite aggregates obtained from the three different types of aluminosilicate raw materials (i.e., ball clay, china clay and beach sand sillimanite) through a double-stage heat treatment process exhibited better sintered properties in terms of bulk density, apparent porosity, water absorption capacity and higher mullite contents in comparison to those obtained following a single-stage firing process. (C) 2008 Elsevier Ltd and Techna Group S.r.l. All rights reserved.




Materials Science


Ganesh, I; Ferreira, JMF

nossos autores


I.G. thanks SERC-DST (Govemment of India) for the awarded BOYSCAST fellowship (SR/BY/E-04/06). The financial support of CICECO is also acknowledged.

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