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Solidia Technologies details low carbon, namesake cement’s properties, performance

Sources: Solidia Technologies, Piscataway, N.J.; CP staff

In the first of a two-part white paper series, Solidia Technologies profiles a sustainable cement which, when combined with proprietary concrete mix designs and production methods, can reduce the carbon footprint of finished products, slabs and structures by 70 percent compared to portland cement concrete alternatives.

Made from the same raw materials and equipment as ASTM C 150 Type I powder, Solidia Cement is adaptable to a wide variety of formulations and milling methods, offering producers the world over a sustainable and performance-enhancing alternative binder. The paper describes Solidia Cement as “a non-hydraulic cement composed primarily of low-lime containing calcium silicate phases” and compares its calcium, silica and aluminum profile with that of portland cement.  

“The setting and hardening characteristics of Solidia Cement are derived from a reaction between carbon dioxide and the calcium silicates. During the carbonation process, calcite and silica form and are responsible for the strength development in concrete,” the paper notes. “The technological process used to produce Solidia Cement is adaptable and flexible, allowing a wide variety of cement raw meal formulations and production methods.”

Solidia Cement concrete products are fabricated with mixing and forming processes mirroring those of portland cement-based concrete, the company notes, but use carbon dioxide as a curing agent—the gas functioning in a similar manner to water in hydraulic cement concrete.

“For over 50 years, scientists have tried to cure concrete with carbon dioxide, knowing the resulting product would be stronger and more stable. Solidia Technologies is the first to make this commercially viable,” says Chief Technology Officer Nicolas DeCristofaro. “Our current focus is testing additional applications with an even wider variety of concrete formulations and manufacture methods to facilitate adoption across the globe.”

Solidia’s ongoing technology and product development is reinforced by third-party research collaboration and testing. Current collaborations include additional research in concrete applications with Lafarge Group, plus a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement with the Federal Highway Administration to examine transportation infrastructure applications. The original generation of the technology was developed at Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey. Solidia Concrete will be explored in a companion paper to be released January 2014.