The thermal dehydroxylation of kaolinite using thermogravimetric analysis and Controlled rate thermal analysis
The aim of this work was to identify parameters that could influence the conversion of kaolinite into metakaolinite. To this end, the dehydroxylation of four kaolinites, using controlled rate thermal analysis (CRTA) and thermogravimetric analysis (TGA), was investigated. X-ray diffraction (XRD) and Fourier transform infra-red (FTIR) were used to confirm the kaolinitic nature of the samples. Their crystallinity was evaluated using the Hinckley index from the XRD patterns and transmission electron microscopy (TEM) was used for morphological observation of the clay platelets. The thermal analyses of the samples indicate, for all samples, low defects as revealed by the low amount of adsorbed water on the clay surface. The dehydroxylation temperature from both techniques was influenced by the sample crystallinity and particle size. It was observed from both techniques that increase crystallinity resulted in high
dehydroxylation temperature. Also, the influence of the clay platelets size on the dehydroxylation temperature, is proposed. All the results indicate that crystallinity and particle size are parameters that could be used to control the temperature for the conversion of kaolinite to metakaolinite.
Keywords: Kaolinite; Crystallinity, Dehydroxylation; Thermal analysis
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