The effects of various concentrations of NaOH on the inter-particle gelation of a fly ash geopolymer aggregate
Mohd Mustafa Al Bakri, Abdullah
Rafiza, Abd Razak
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Aggregates can be categorized into natural and artificial aggregates. Preserving natural resources is crucial to ensuring the constant supply of natural aggregates. In order to preserve these natural resources, the production of artificial aggregates is beginning to gain the attention of researchers worldwide. One of the methods involves using geopolymer technology. On this basis, this current research focuses on the inter-particle effect on the properties of fly ash geopolymer aggregates with different molarities of sodium hydroxide (NaOH). The effects of synthesis parameters (6, 8, 10, 12, and 14 M) on the mechanical and microstructural properties of the fly ash geopolymer aggregate were studied. The fly ash geopolymer aggregate was palletized manually by using a hand to form a sphere-shaped aggregate where the ratio of NaOH/Na2SiO3 used was constant at 2.5. The results indicated that the NaOH molarity has a significant effect on the impact strength of a fly ash geopolymer aggregate. The highest aggregate impact value (AIV) was obtained for samples with 6 M NaOH molarity (26.95%), indicating the lowest strength among other molarities studied and the lowest density of 2150 kg/m3. The low concentration of sodium hydroxide in the alkali activator solution resulted in the dissolution of fly ash being limited; thus, the inter-particle volume cannot be fully filled by the precipitated gels.