One of the major problems currently restricting the utilization of high-calcium (ASTM Class C) fly ashes in Iowa is lack of adequate storage space. High-calcium fly ashes are self-cementitious and are generally not economically reclaimable once they have been exposed to water (i.e., the environment). Since the on-site silo storage capacity of a given power plant is normally only about one or two weeks of overall generating capacity (assuming nearly full load), the fly ash industry is hard-pressed to meet the demand for fly ash during the peak construction months.
This paper presents some early research findings concerning the storage alternatives available for these high-calcium fly ashes. A simple pan agglomerator, requiring only the addition of a water spray was used to produce fly ash pellets. Since the method required minimal energy input the process would be expected to be economically feasible for field production. Laboratory produced pellets appeared strong and durable and would be expected to withstand field handling without significant degradation. The pelletization process did not appear to result in a loss of reactivity for either the air-dried or water-cured pellets. This is highly important for potential use in Portland cement concrete or soil stabilization.