First Graphene and Suvo Strategic Minerals have signed an agreement to jointly develop graphene-enhanced metakaolin solutions for the production of low emission concrete products.
Technologies from the graphene manufacturer and the producer of metakaolin, a pozzolanic material derived from fine kaolinite clay, will be used to partially replace traditional clinker which is the binding element in cement.
The roasting of calcium carbonate during clinker manufacturing can produce as much as 900kgs of COS for every tonne of cement manufactured.
Metakaolin is also manufactured using a calcination process, but at much lower temperatures than for clinker and produces significantly lower emissions.
According to the two companies: “Like graphene, metakaolin has been proven to provide superior performance benefits in cement and concrete applications, but is susceptible to degradation some instances including exposure to high temperatures.
“Research has shown that graphene-enhanced metakaolin can provide far superior performance under a broader range of conditions.”
Suvo’s Pittong Operations (pictured), located in Victoria 40km west of Ballarat, Victoria is the sole wet kaolin mine and processing plant in Australia.
Under the agreement First Graphene will conduct R&D while Suvo will focus on scaling up production.
The companies hope that by combining their technologies they can achieve early hardness development and durability in concrete.
First graphene managing director Michael Bell said: “This (agreement) marks another step in First Grapene’s pursuit of greener solutions for the construction sector.
“Building on the success we have already demonstrated and are actively commercialising by developing PureGRAPH admixture and grinding aids to reduce CO2 emissions and improve performance in cement and concrete, the agreement with Suvo provides a potential path to realising even greater improvements.”
He said the two companies work offered the potential to ultimately eliminate emissions.
Picture: Suvo Strategic Minerals/Pittong Operations