Materiales de Construcción, Vol 67, No 328 (2017)

Properties of geopolymer binders prepared from milled pond ash

J. Temuujin
Institute of Chemistry and Chemical Technology, Mongolian Academy of Sciences, Mongolia

A. Minjigmaa
Institute of Chemistry and Chemical Technology, Mongolian Academy of Sciences, Mongolia

U. Bayarzul
Institute of Chemistry and Chemical Technology, Mongolian Academy of Sciences, Mongolia

D. S. Kim
Korea Institute of Ceramic Engineering and Technology, Korea, Republic of

S-Ho Lee
Korea Institute of Ceramic Engineering and Technology, Korea, Republic of

H. J. Lee
Korea Institute of Ceramic Engineering and Technology, Korea, Republic of

C. H. Ruescher
Institute of Mineralogy, Leibniz University of Hannover, Germany

K. J.D. MacKenzie
MacDiarmid Institute for Advanced Materials and Nanotechnology, Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand


Alkali-activated materials were prepared from pond ash from the Darkhan city (Mongolia) thermal power station. This ash contains about 60 wt % X-ray amorphous material in addition to quartz, mullite, hematite and magnesioferrite, and presents significant storage problems since it is accumulating in large amounts and is a hazardous waste, containing 90–100 ppm of the heavy metals As, Pb and Cr, and about 800 ppm Sr. Alkali-activated materials synthesized from the as-received pond ash achieved compressive strengths of only 3.25 MPa. Reduction of the particle size by mechanical milling for up to 30 min progressively increases the compressive strength of the resulting alkali-activated geopolymer up to 15.4 MPa. Leaching tests indicate that the combination of milling and alkali treatment does not cause the release of the hazardous heavy metals from the product, making it suitable for construction applications.


Pond ash; Grinding; Alkali-activated cement; Compressive strength; Microstructure

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