High Calcium Fly Ash Geopolymer Stabilized Lateritic Soil and Granulated Blast Furnace Slag Blends as a Pavement Base Material

J Hazard Mater. 2018 Jan 5;341:257-267. doi: 10.1016/j.jhazmat.2017.07.067. Epub 2017 Jul 31.

Abstract

Granulated Blast Furnace Slag (GBFS) was used as a replacement material in marginal lateritic soil (LS) while class C Fly Ash (FA) was used as a precursor for the geopolymerization process to develop a low-carbon pavement base material at ambient temperature. Unconfined Compression Strength (UCS) tests were performed to investigate the strength development of geopolymer stabilized LS/GBFS blends. Scanning Electron Microscopy and X-ray Diffraction analysis were undertaken to examine the role of the various influencing factors on UCS development. The influencing factors studied included GBFS content, Na2SiO3:NaOH ratio (NS:NH) and curing time. The 7-day soaked UCS of FA geopolymer stabilized LS/GBFS blends at various NS:NH ratios tested was found to satisfy the specifications of the Thailand national road authorities. The GBFS replacement was found to be insignificant for the improvement of the UCS of FA geopolymer stabilized LS/GBFS blends at low NS:NH ratio of 50:50. Microstructural analysis indicated the coexistence of Calcium Silicate Hydrate (CSH) and Sodium Alumino Silicate Hydrate products in FA geopolymer stabilized LS/GBFS blends. This research enables GBFS, which is traditionally considered as a waste material, to be used as a replacement and partially reactive material in FA geopolymer pavement applications.

Keywords: Fly ash; Geopolymer; Granulated blast furnace slag; Lateritic soil; Pavement base.