Modelling Long-Term Durability Performance of Cementitious Materials under Sodium Sulphate Interaction
Division of Sustainable Resources Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, Hokkaido University, Kita 13, Nishi 8, Kita-ku, Sapporo 060-8628, Japan
Taisei Corporation, 344-1 Nase-cho, Totsuka-ku, Yokohama 245-0051, Japan
Hokkaido University, Kita 8, Nishi 5, Kita-ku, Sapporo 060-0808, Japan
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Appl. Sci. 2018, 8(12), 2597; https://doi.org/10.3390/app8122597
Received: 29 November 2018 / Revised: 6 December 2018 / Accepted: 10 December 2018 / Published: 12 December 2018
(This article belongs to the Section Environmental and Sustainable Science and Technology)
Cementitious materials are one of the essential components for low- and intermediate-level waste disposal sites. Low-level nuclear waste from power plants consists of highly concentrated (~25 wt %) Na2SO4, and the wastes are solidified with cementitious materials. Degradation of cementitious materials that result from chemical and physical sulphate attack is a major concern in the safety of the waste disposal. In this study, hydration and reactive transport models, developed in previous works by the authors, were applied with Pitzer interactions coefficients to evaluate the long-term performance of Portland cement (PC) solidified with high concentration of Na2SO4. Expansive sulphate-bearing products of ettringite and mirabilite were formed and filled the pores in the hydrating PC with 25% of Na2SO4 by weight, but they were destabilised as temperature increased. Influence of Na2SO4 concentration and temperature on mineralogical changes is discussed. The simulation results from the reactive-transport model showed that the degradation of solidified Na2SO4 waste by cementitious materials exposed to 10% Na2SO4 for 1000 years is due to dissolution of mirabilite and secondary formation of ettringite, but not Na2SO4 crystallisation. The phases and porosity became stable close to exposure surface after 10 years, although the deterioration progressed from the surface to core with exposure time.