Exploring mineral deposits in Palestine for potential use in manufacturing refractory ceramics

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Ramadan, Hiba
Sameer, Yasmina
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Abstract Refractories are material that retain their strength and integrity at relatively high temperature. They are mainly oxide ceramics such as silica, alumina, zirconia or mixed oxides such as mullite, wollastonite, etc. Refractory ceramics are important for local industry. They are used in these industries for internal lining of melting furnaces and for insulation in many sectors of construction industry. In this project, we worked on two lines, for the manufacture of refractory. On the first line, we worked on clay-sand refractory materials (with 1:3 sand to clay ratio), on the second line, we worked on calcium-silicate bricks. The raw materials available in Palestine were used: clay was obtained from the Jaba area in Jenin, and calcium was obtained from limestone (powder resulting from stone cutting factories). The extruder was used to make cylindrical samples of uniform diameter (D=30mm), length (L=76mm) with density 2 g/cm3. The samples were dried at 40 °C. Finally, the sample were fired at 1000 °C, 1100 °C and 1200 °C. The product obtained at different stages was tested for their compression strength, water absorption and color. In compression test of the first group, it was noticed that compressive strength decreased with temperature increase, but for the second group it increases when temperature increases. In the absorption test, when the rate of absorption for clay to sand was compared to ones on graduation project 1, it was found that 1:3 sand to clay ratio fired at 1200°C gave the least absorption rate. The colors of the second group did not change after the firing process.