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Cement analysis by wavelength dispersive XRF spectrometry

Winter 2019 Volume 35, No. 1
17-23
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Hisashi Homma

Cement is one of the most essential materials in modern construction. In this article, the term “cement” means Portland cement, which is typically a grayish powder to be solidified by a hydration reaction. Portland cement comprises most of the total cement production.

The cement manufacturing process is composed of three basic steps: raw meal preparation, clinker production and cement milling. In the raw meal preparation process, raw materials such as limestone, clay, shale, silica sand and iron oxides are blended together in suitable proportions to make raw meal. During the clinker production process, preheated and precalcined raw meal is fed into a rotary kiln for sintering at up to 1450°C to form clinker minerals, then the hot clinker is cooled. In the cement process, small quantities of gypsum are added to clinker. They are then milled together to make final cement products.

Production of uniformly high-quality cement requires advanced process control and blending quality based on accurate chemical composition obtained by prompt and reliable chemical analysis methods.