Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 3

ettringite Related Abstracts

3 Properties of Ettringite According to Hydration, Dehydration and Carbonation Process

Authors: Frédéric Kuznik, Kévyn Johannes, Matthieu Horgnies, Bao Chen, Vincent Morin, Edouard Gengembre


The contradiction between energy consumption, environment protection, and social development is increasingly intensified during recent decade years. At the same time, as avoiding fossil-fuels-thirsty, people turn their view on the renewable green energy, such as solar energy, wind power, hydropower, etc. However, due to the unavoidable mismatch on geography and time for production and consumption, energy storage seems to be one of the most reasonable solutions to enlarge the use of renewable energies. Thermal energy storage (TES), a branch of energy storage solution, mainly concerns the capture, storage and consumption of thermal energy for later use in different scales (individual house, apartment, district, and city). In TES research field, sensible heat and latent heat storage have been widely studied and presented at an advanced stage of development. Compared with them, thermochemical energy storage is still at initial phase but provides a relatively higher theoretical energy density and a long shelf life without heat dissipation during storage. Among thermochemical energy storage materials, inorganic pure or composite compounds like micro-porous silica gel, SrBr₂ hydrate and MgSO₄-Zeolithe have been reported as promising to be integrated into thermal energy storage systems. However, the cost of these materials, one of main obstacles, may hinder the wide use of energy storage systems in real application scales (individual house, apartment, district and even city). New studies on ettringite show promising application for thermal energy storage since its high energy density and large resource from cementitious materials. Ettringite, or calcium trisulfoaluminate hydrate, of which chemical formula is 3CaO∙Al₂O₃∙3CaSO₄∙32H₂O, or C₆AS̅₃H₃₂ as known in cement chemistry notation, is one of the most important members of AFt group. As a common compound in hydrated cements, ettringite has been widely studied for its performances in construction but barely known as a thermochemical material. For this study, we summarize available data about the structure and properties of ettringite and its metastable phase (meta-ettringite), including the processes of hydration, thermal conversion and carbonation durability for thermal energy storage.

Keywords: Building materials, Thermal Energy Storage, ettringite, meta-ettringite

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2 Study of Nucleation and Growth Processes of Ettringite in Supersaturated Diluted Solutions

Authors: E. Poupelloz, S. Gauffinet


Ettringite Ca₆Al₂(SO₄)₃(OH)₁₂26H₂O is one of the major hydrates formed during cement hydration. Ettringite forms in Portland cement from the reaction between tricalcium aluminate Ca₃Al₂O₆ and calcium sulfate. Ettringite is also present in calcium sulfoaluminate cement in which it is the major hydrate, formed by the reaction between yeelimite Ca₄(AlO₂)₆SO₄ and calcium sulfate. About the formation of ettringite, numerous results are available in the literature even if some issues are still under discussion. However, almost all published work about ettringite was done on cementitious systems. Yet in cement, hydration reactions are very complex, the result of dissolution-precipitation processes and are submitted to various interactions. Understanding the formation process of a phase alone, here ettringite, is the first step to later understand the much more complex reactions happening in cement. This study is crucial for the comprehension of early cement hydration and physical behavior. Indeed formation of hydrates, in particular, ettringite, will have an influence on the rheological properties of the cement paste and on the need for admixtures. To make progress toward the understanding of existing phenomena, a specific study of nucleation and growth processes of ettringite was conducted. First ettringite nucleation was studied in ionic aqueous solutions, with controlled but different experimental conditions, as different supersaturation degrees (β), different pH or presence of exogenous ions. Through induction time measurements, interfacial ettringite crystals solution energies (γ) were determined. Growth of ettringite in supersaturated solutions was also studied through chain crystallization reactions. Specific BET surface area measurements and Scanning Electron Microscopy observations seemed to prove that growth process is favored over the nucleation process when ettringite crystals are initially present in a solution with a low supersaturation degree. The influence of stirring on ettringite formation was also investigated. Observation was made that intensity and nature of stirring have a high influence on the size of ettringite needles formed. Needle sizes vary from less than 10µm long depending on the stirring to almost 100µm long without any stirring. During all previously mentioned experiments, initially present ions are consumed to form ettringite in such a way that the supersaturation degree with regard to ettringite is decreasing over time. To avoid this phenomenon a device compensating the drop of ion concentrations by adding some more solutions, and therefore always have constant ionic concentrations, was used. This constant β recreates the conditions of the beginning of cement paste hydration, when the dissolution of solid reagents compensates the consumption of ions to form hydrates. This device allowed the determination of the ettringite precipitation rate as a function of the supersaturation degree β. Taking samples at different time during ettringite precipitation and doing BET measurements allowed the determination of the interfacial growth rate of ettringite in m²/s. This work will lead to a better understanding and control of ettringite formation alone and thus during cements hydration. This study will also ultimately define the impact of ettringite formation process on the rheology of cement pastes at early age, which is a crucial parameter from a practical point of view.

Keywords: Cement Hydration, ettringite, morphology of crystals, nucleation-growth process

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1 A Modular Reactor for Thermochemical Energy Storage Examination of Ettringite-Based Materials

Authors: B. Chen, F. Kuznik, M. Horgnies, K. Johannes, V. Morin, E. Gengembre


More attention on renewable energy has been done after the achievement of Paris Agreement against climate change. Solar-based technology is supposed to be one of the most promising green energy technologies for residential buildings since its widely thermal usage for hot water and heating. However, the seasonal mismatch between its production and consumption makes buildings need an energy storage system to improve the efficiency of renewable energy use. Indeed, there exist already different kinds of energy storage systems using sensible or latent heat. With the consideration of energy dissipation during storage and low energy density for above two methods, thermochemical energy storage is then recommended. Recently, ettringite (3CaO∙Al₂O₃∙3CaSO₄∙32H₂O) based materials have been reported as potential thermochemical storage materials because of high energy density (~500 kWh/m³), low material cost (700 €/m³) and low storage temperature (~60-70°C), compared to reported salt hydrates like SrBr₂·6H₂O (42 k€/m³, ~80°C), LaCl₃·7H₂O (38 k€/m³, ~100°C) and MgSO₄·7H₂O (5 k€/m³, ~150°C). Therefore, they have the possibility to be largely used in building sector with being coupled to normal solar panel systems. On the other side, the lack in terms of extensive examination leads to poor knowledge on their thermal properties and limit maturity of this technology. The aim of this work is to develop a modular reactor adapting to thermal characterizations of ettringite-based material particles of different sizes. The filled materials in the reactor can be self-compacted vertically to ensure hot air or humid air goes through homogenously. Additionally, quick assembly and modification of reactor, like LEGO™ plastic blocks, make it suitable to distinct thermochemical energy storage material samples with different weights (from some grams to several kilograms). In our case, quantity of stored and released energy, best work conditions and even chemical durability of ettringite-based materials have been investigated.

Keywords: Hydration, dehydration, ettringite, modular reactor, thermochemical energy storage

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