Sunday, 22 January 2017
Many hydro- and pyro-metallurgical processes produce Fe-rich residues that find limited applications; notable uses are in the raw meal for cement production, as aggregate in concrete, as abrasive blasting grit, and as media in geotechnical and road pavement applications.
At next year's Sustainable Minerals '18 conference in Namibia, Prof. Yiannis Pontikes, of KU Leuven, Belgium will introduce, in a keynote lecture, an alternative process where the Fe-rich residue is used as raw material in the synthesis of inorganic polymers. These materials show properties comparable to Portland cement while having a smaller environmental footprint.
Yiannis Pontikes is a BOF-ZAP associate professor at the Department of Materials Engineering, KU Leuven, Belgium. He leads the Secondary Resources for Engineered Material (SREMat) research group, that consists of approximately 10 post-doctoral and postgraduate researchers. SREMat has built an expertise on the valorisation of residues towards ceramic, cement and inorganic polymer (geopolymer) formulations, from the level of binder synthesis all the way to full scale prototypes. He is on the Scientific Advisory Board of the Waste and Biomass Valorization journal, and in 2015, was one of the founders of the Journal of Sustainable Metallurgy, where he serves as the managing editor.