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A novel, structural, carbon-negative cement

By Gerald Ondrey |

Magnesia cements have been around for thousands of years, and have been explored extensively over recent decades primarily because of their capacity to absorb CO2 from the atmosphere at ambient temperatures. Until now, however, their use has been limited to rudimentary applications like cement block and non-load-bearing wall systems, because their formulations have been too corrosive to accommodate structural steel reinforcing agents, such as rebar. With support from Beton Consulting Engineers (Mendota Heights, MN; www.betonconsultingeng.com), MSB Global, Inc. (New York) has raised the pH of its reactive magnesia cement (RMC) to a level that meets the ASTM code compliance for a reinforcing steel agent, thereby making it suitable for structural, poured-in-place applications and enabling carbon negativity in as little as seven years. It is well known that cement production accounts for about 8% of global CO2 emissions. Approximately 90% of these emissions come from the production of clinker used as the binder in ordinary Portland cement (PC). PC relies on the use of calcium carbonate (limestone), which is calcinated at high temperatures in a cement kiln to produce lime (CaO), along with a release of CO2 from the decarbonation of limestone.…
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