Prior full-scale foundry data have shown that when an advanced oxidation (AO) process is employed in a green sand system, the foundry needs 20-35% less makeup bentonite clay than when AO is not employed. We herein sought to explore the mechanism of this enhancement and found that AO water displaced the carbon coating of pyrolyzed carbonaceous condensates that otherwise accumulated on the bentonite surface. This was discerned by surface elemental analysis. This AO treatment restored the clay's capacity to adsorb methylene blue (as a measure of its surface charge) and water vapor (as a reflection of its hydrophilic character). In full-scale foundries, these parameters have been tied to improved green compressive strength and mold performance. When baghouse dust from a full-scale foundry received ultrasonic treatment in the lab, 25-30% of the dust classified into the clay-size fraction, whereas only 7% classified this way without ultrasonics. Also, the ultrasonication caused a size reduction of the bentonite due to the delamination of bentonite particles. The average bentonite particle diameter decreased from 4.6 to 3 μm, while the light-scattering surface area increased over 50% after 20 min ultrasonication. This would greatly improve the bonding efficiency of the bentonite according to the classical clay bonding mechanism. As a combined result of these mechanisms, the reduced bentonite consumption in full-scale foundries could be accounted for.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Environmental Chemistry