Characterization of alumina crucible made from aluminum industrial waste


The use of aluminum waste sludge as a raw material in the ceramic industry was studied due to its economical, energy, and environmental advantages. This study focused on preparation and characterization of alumina crucibles made from aluminum industrial waste for the purpose of glass melting. The main objective of this project was to reduce or replace both alumina powder and alumina crucibles imported from abroad. The trial formulas were composed mainly of calcined aluminum waste (CAW) from aluminum factory. Additionally, sodium silicate and sodium salts of polycarboxylic acid were used as deflocculants while polysaccharide was used as a binder. The crucibles were shaped by the slip casting method and then sintered at 1600 and 1700 °C. The water absorption, bulk density, apparent porosity, and 3-point bending strength were investigated. After sintering at 1600 and 1700 °C, the crucible with 75 wt% of aluminum waste (75AC formula) showed 0.18 and 0.06% water absorption, 3.41 and 3.36 g/cm3 bulk density, 0.61 and 0.20% apparent porosity, and 139.11 and 159.84 MPa bending strength, respectively. The coefficient of thermal expansion between 25 and 1000 °C of 75AC composition was 6.9807 × 10−6/°C and the crucibles passed three cycles of 20–200 °C thermal shock resistance testing. The resulting crucibles were successful in the trial for glass melting between 1450 and 1500 °C without either breaking or affecting the glass component. Calculation of the production costs for these lab-scale trials revealed that the crucible made from aluminum waste was about 70% cheaper than that made from commercial alumina. As a result, this study indicated that the alumina crucible made from aluminum industrial waste performed comparably with the commercial crucible being used for glass melting purposes.

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The authors would like to offer their sincere gratitude to the Muangthong Aluminium Industry Co., Ltd. for the aluminum waste supplied.


This study was financially supported by the National Metal and Materials Technology Center (MTEC).

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Correspondence to Watcharee Sornlar.

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Sornlar, W., Choeycharoen, P. & Wannagon, A. Characterization of alumina crucible made from aluminum industrial waste. J Aust Ceram Soc 56, 771–779 (2020).

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  • Aluminum waste
  • Alumina crucible
  • Aluminum industry
  • Glass melting