Graduate Research Papers


Open Access Graduate Research Paper


Because of impending governmental regulations in regards to disposal of waste materials and decreasing sand mine deposits, foundries are interested in studying new aggregate materials for mold production to successfully achieve environmental, supply, and quality challenges. There are two main issues to be addressed in the short term: 1) extend the lifetime of the molding materials to reduce disposal costs and 2) reduce exposure to crystalline produced by silica sand. Small and medium-sized foundries are at an economic disadvantage in integrating new technologies to comply with these new challenges.

This research work funded by the Iowa Recycling and Reuse Technology Transfer Center (RR TTC) has investigated the manufacturing feasibility of the ceramic aggregate for iron casting production. The experimental approach addressed the performance, production capabilities, and associated costs of implementing a ceramic aggregate for molding operations. The ceramic aggregate has physical and chemical properties attractive for casting applications. The excellent durability of the ceramic aggregate allows foundries to use this material for extended periods of time without reconditioning sand systems. Casting trials, using ceramic aggregate as core material, with silica green sand molds, revealed no adverse effects on green ·sand properties or on the surface quality for iron castings. Economical process analyses revealed a clear cost advantage by using the ceramic aggregate integrated with mechanical-thermal reclamation systems. Finally, because the ceramic aggregate does not contain crystalline silica, the government's Permissible Exposure Limits (PEL) can be reached without addition of sophisticated dust collectors.

Year of Submission


Degree Name

Master of Arts


Department of Industrial Technology

First Advisor

Ali E. Kashef


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Date Original

Spring 2002

Object Description

1 PDF file (vii, 58 pages)